Fri. Jun 2nd, 2023

Book cover

Showing masterful command of metrics and rhyme, the launches observations both playful and poetic reflective on topics from seasons to self. He lays personal claim in “What’s Mine” to the surreal titular “red ear.” Schechter also praises nonconformity (“The Horse Who Said Moo,” “Why Can’t an Elephant?”) and in a scientific vein wonders “does the caterpillar brain / in the butterfly remain?” or if two observers might see the same “Colors” differently. Even when tackling serious themes (“Fomenting war is bad. Make peace! / Don’t let the world get blown up. / You know this. You don’t need this poem. /Unless you are a grown-up”) he keeps the tone light and dishes up plenty of outright crowd pleasers, notably by trumpeting a paean to his nose (“Thank You, Nose”), wishing for an “Adjustable Nose,” and urging readers in “Nosy Advice” to be proud of their own, since “You only get one nose in life, / so make sure you don’t blow it.” The line drawings, featuring figures with skin the white of the page, that Federico places alongside most of the entries aren’t as comical as Shel Silverstein’s but do share some of the same open, breezy look.

By cb2gp