Children’s poetry is a high calling. Children’s poetry is a very high calling. Childhood is a place of wonder. not to mention magic. Childhood is that land of make believe where the child will slip through its gates on a whim and show no remorse in knowing you cannot follow. He delights to pick up with his imaginary friends, these sundry creatures who will dance and sing and scream and yell or carry on long discourses at will. He will encourage them to be big and bad or soft and tender as suits his needs. He will follow or lead the way to other universes or rumble around up in his very own tree fort or backyard playground.
Animals will take on human and even super human qualities and do a better job at it than most humans. They will speak and be heard, argue to get their way, stomp around or cozy up to a criminal knowing they have the power to squash him like a bug, especially the elephants. But their relationship to the child is one of divine symbiosis.
Into this world many poets crash and burn while others go on to create those classic works we all have come to know and love. Is it possible that these heady individuals have never left this magical land? This will throw ketchup on the idea that ‘Once you pass its borders you can never return again.’ But let us get on to the works of poetry written for children and be done with it. It is a wonderful place to be.