Review: Poems To Dream On

Poems To Dream On

Author: Judy Mastrangelo, Robert Louis Stevenson, Eugene Field, Christina Rossetti, Joyce Kilmer, Clement C. Moore, Cecil Frances Alexander, Glen MacDonough, Rose Fyleman

Artist: Judy Mastrangelo

Independently Published, June, 2022

ISBN #979-8442472301

“Poems To Dream On” is a 74-page anthology from artist Judy Mastrangelo. Building on a few of her favorite poems from seven different authors, Mastrangelo brings a very special visual essence to this beloved poetry from the past. (Her dedication is to these talented authors whose work she has chosen to illustrate.)

The first poem is “The Swing”, by Robert Louise Stevenson. Depicted are two children, a little boy and a little girl, happily swinging over a field of flowers. There is a beautiful blue sky behind them, and two butterflies cavorting in front of them. What wonderful childhood memories this brings back!

The second poem is my very favorite – “Three Little Kittens”, an English nursery rhyme. I think we all remember the very first lines “Three little kittens, they lost their mittens”. The imagery is breathtaking – three young kittens, against a background of pillows and flowers. We just know they are goi g to be up to some shenanigans!

“The Fly~Away Horse”, by Eugene Field, is a showstopper! We see a horse with wings, silhouetted against a large moon. A beautiful orange bird is perched on a nearby branch, while on the ground we see rabbits, mice, and squirrels admiring the flying horse in the sky. The next scene for tis poem shows a grandmother seated amongst the clouds, surrounded by young children. Several more scenes follow, the imagery adding amazing depth to the already deep words.

The poem “All Things Bright and Beautiful” brought tears to my eyes, as it always does. “All things bright and beautiful, All creatures great and small, All things wise and wonderful, The Lord God made them all.” The imagery is that of a young girl, wearing a beautiful lavender dress and shoes … and wings. She is carrying a watering can and watering the flowers in front of her. She is standing in a field of flowers, in front of a lovely birdhouse. She is accompanied by rabbits, birds, and butterflies.

Mastrangelo has also included some of her own original poems, including “Graceful Swan Boat” and “To A Rabbit”. Beautiful writing, beautiful artistry!

Each poem in this book has clearly been carefully chosen. The artwork is realistic, with beautiful, intense colors. What a wonderful way to celebrate poetry, and what a wonderful way to bond with a child while reading them the poetry (or having them read it to you). It is also a wonderful tool to use for just escaping from the world for a short time and entering the world of gentle, magical imagination.

(Before I forget – “A Visit From Saint Nicholas” has also been included in this anthology. Remember these words … “Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house”. I would purchase the book now and gift it to a friend, or a child that you know for Christmas. It would be a very special gift!)

Thank you to Judy Mastrangelo for bringing back so many beloved poems, and bringing them to a new audience (or perhaps an audience that has not read them in a very long time!). And for gifting us with some of your own poetry!

© June 2022 Bonnie Cehovet

Reproduction is prohibited without written permission from the author.

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