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Title: Sometimes I Feel This Way
Author: John Ciardi
Source Book: You Read To Me, I'll Read To You
Publisher: Harper & Row
Year of Publication: 1962
Comments: The dual nature of humankind explored to amusing effect.

I have one head that wants to be good,
And one that wants to be bad.
And always, as soon as I get up,
One of my heads is sad.

"Be Bad," says one head. "Don't you know
"It's fun to be bad. Be as bad as you like.
Put sand in your brother's shoe -- that's fun.
Put gum on the seat of your sister's bike."

"What fun is that?" says my other head.
"Why not go down before the rest
And set things out for breakfast? My,
That would please Mother. Be good -- that's best."

"What! Better than putting frogs in the sink?
Or salt in the tea-pot? Have some fun.
Be bad, be bad, be good and bed.
You know it is good to be bad," says One.

"Is it good to make Sister and Brother sad?
And Mother and Daddy? And when you do,
Is it good to get spanked? Is it good to cry?
No, no. Be good -- that's best," says Two.

So one by one they say what they say,
And what they say is "Be Good -- Be Bad."
And if One is happy that makes Two cry.
And if Two is happy that makes One sad.

Someday maybe, when I grow up,
I shall wake and find that I have just one --
The happy head. But which will it be?
I wish I knew. They are both some fun.

Title: hist whist
Author: e. e. cummings
Source Book: hist whist
Publisher: Crown
Year of Publication: 1989
Comments: Once the students get old enough to learn about Freud, this one may come to mind once again.

hist whist
little ghostthings

little twitchy
witches and tingling
hob-a-nob hob-a-nob

little hoppy happy
toad in tweeds
little itchy mousies

with scuttling
eyes rustle and run and

whisk look out for the old woman
with the wart on her nose
what she'll do to yer
nobody knows

for she knows the devil ooch
the devil ouch
the devil
ach the great




Title: The Universe
Author: Mary Britton Miller
Source Book: The Random House Book of Poetry for Children
Publisher: Random House
Year of Publication: 1983
Comments: The numinosity of the physical world concisely conveyed.

There is the moon, there is the sun
Round which we circle every year,
And there are all the stars we see
On starry nights when skies are clear,
And all the countless stars that lie
Beyond the reach of human eye.
If every bud on every tree,
All birds and fireflies and bees
And all the flowers that bloom and die
Upon the earth were counted up,
The number of the stars would be
Greater, they say, than all of these.

Title: Auguries of Innocence
Author: William Blake
Source Book: The Random House Book of Poetry for Children
Publisher: Random House
Year of Publication: 1983
Comments: English Romantic issues Zen wisdom.

To see a World in a grain of sand,
And a Heaven in a wild flower,
Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand,
And Eternity for an hour.

Title: Beyond Winter
Author: Ralph Waldo Emerson
Source Book: The Random House Book of Poetry for Children
Publisher: Random House
Year of Publication: 1983
Comments: An elaboration on half-empty vs. half-filled.

Over the winter glaciers
I see the summer glow,
And through the wild-piled snowdrift
The warm rosebuds below.

Title: I Saw A Little Girl I Hate
Author: Arnold Spilka
Source Book: The Random House Book of Poetry for Children
Publisher: Random House
Year of Publication: 1983
Comments: Calvin and Susie come to mind, and some teasing from Hobbes.

I saw a little girl I hate
And kicked her with my toes
She turned
And smiled
And KISSED me!
Then she punched me in the nose.

Title: Hug O' War
Author: Shel Silverstein
Source Book: The Random House Book of Poetry for Children
Publisher: Random House
Year of Publication: 1983
Comments: Fun hippie propoganda from a capital P poet. "Hey Shel, some Whole Earth Catalog editor is on the phone."

I will not play at tug o' war.
I'd rather play at hug o' war,
Where everyone hugs
Instead of tugs,
Where everyone giggles
And rolls on the rug,
Where everyone kisses,
And everyone grins,
And everyone cuddles,
And everyone wins.

Title: Homework
Author: Jane Yolen
Source Book: The Random House Book of Poetry for Children
Publisher: Random House
Year of Publication: 1983
Comments: Fantasy maven Yolen turns to realism, hits a little too close to home.

What is it about homework
That makes me want to write
My Great Aunt Myrt to thank her for
The sweater that's too tight?

What is it about homework
That makes me pick up socks
That stink from days and days of wear
Then clean the litter box?

What is it about homework
That makes me volunteer
To take the garbage out before
The bugs and flies appear?

What is it about homework
That makes me wash my hair
And take an hour combing out
The snags and tangles there?

What is it about homework?
You know, I wish I knew
'Cause nights when I've got homework
I've got too much to do!

Title: The Crocodile
Author: Lewis Carroll
Source Book: The Random House Book of Poetry for Children
Publisher: Random House
Year of Publication: 1983
Comments: The psyche is drawn to this archetypical monster.

How doth the little crocodile
Improve his shining tail,
And pour the waters of the Nile
On every golden scale!

How cheerfully he seems to grin!
How neatly spread his claws,
And welcomes his little fishes in
With gently smiling jaws!

Title: Yukon Ho!
Author: Bill Watterson
Source Book: Yukon Ho! A Calvin & Hobbes Collection
Publisher: Andrews and McMeel
Year of Publication: 1989
Comments: Appealing wisdom from one of the great contemporary spiritual leaders.

My tiger friend has got the sled, And I have packed a snack.
We're all set for the trip ahead.
We're never coming back!

We're abandoniing this life we've led!
So long, Mom and Pop!
We're sick of doing what you've said,
And now it's going to stop!

W're going where it snows all year,
Where life can have real meaning.
A place where we won't have to hear,
"Your room could stand some cleaning."

the Yukon is the place fou us!
That's where we want to live.
Up there we'll get to yell and cuss,
And act real primitive.

We'll never hae to go to school,
Forced into submission,
By monstruous, crabby teachers who'll
Make us learn addition.

We'll never have to clean a plate
Of veggie glops and goos.
Messily we'll masticate,
Using any fork we choose!

The timber wolves will be our friends.
We'll stay up late and howl,
At the moon, till mighttime ends,
Before going on the prowl.

Oh, what a life! We cannot wait,
To be in that arctic land,
Where we'll be masters of our fate,
And lead a life that's grand!

No more of parental rules!
We're heading for some snow!
Good riddance to those grown-up ghouls!
We're leaving! Yukon Ho!

Title: Shadow-Bride
Author: J.R.R. Tolkein
Source Book: The Tolkein Reader
Publisher: Ballantine
Year of Publication:
Comments: A rarer selection from the Lord of the Genre; could awaken a sense of mysticism in Carl Sagan. Freud would enjoy this one too.

There was a man who dwelt alone,
as day and night went past
he sat as still as carven stone,
and yet no shadow cast.
The white owls perched upon his head
beneath the winter moon;
they wiped their beaks and thought him dead
under the stars of June.

There came a lady clad in grey
in the twilight shining:
one moment she would stand and stay,
her hair with flowers entwining.
He woke, as had he sprung from stone,
and broke the spell that bound him;
he clasped her fast, both flesh and bone,
and wrapped her shadow round him.

There never more she walks her ways
by sun or moon or star;
she dwells below where neither days
nor any nights there are.
But once a year when caverns yawn
and hidden things awake,
they dance together then till dawn
and a single shadow make.

Title: Winter Moon
Author: Langston Hughes
Source Book: Knock at a Star
Publisher: Little, Brown & co.
Year of Publication: 1982
Comments: Poetry as the pure, distilled essence of thought and feeling.

How thin and sharp is the moon tonight!
How thin and sharp and ghostly white
Is the slim curved crook of the moon tonight!

Title: The Purist
Author: Ogden Nash
Source Book: Knock at a Star
Publisher: Little, Brown & co.
Year of Publication: 1982
Comments: This fun piece pokes fun at emphasizing rational thought over human emotion. Henri Bergson smiles on this one.

I give you now Professor Twist,
A conscientious scientist.
Trustees exclaimed, "He never bungles!"
And sent him off to distant jungles.
Camped on a tropic riverside,
One day he missed his loving bride.
She had, the guide informed him later,
Been eaten by an alligator.
Professor Twist could not but smile.
"You mean," he said, "a crocodile."

Title: "Think As I Think," Said a Man
Author: Stephen Crane
Source Book: Knock at a Star
Publisher: Little, Brown & co.
Year of Publication: 1982
Comments: A pacifist before it was cool, Crane conforms to a freethinker's creed.

"Think as I think," said a man,
"Or you are abominally wicked;
You are a toad."

And after I had thought of it,
I said, "I will be a toad."

Title: A Word Is Dead
Author: Emily Dickinson
Source Book: Knock at a Star
Publisher: Little, Brown & co.
Year of Publication: 1982
Comments: A consummate poet's view on language.

A word is dead
When it is said,
Some say.
I sayit just
Begins to live
That day.

Title: Come Unto These Yellow Sands
Author: William Shakespeare
Source Book: The Book of a Thousand Poems
Publisher: Peter Bedrick Books
Year of Publication: 1983
Comments: Any poetry session earns some class with this eminently musical (but still fun for kids) selection from the Bard himself.

Come unto these yellow sands,
And then take hands:
Curtsied when you have, and kiss'd,
The wild waves whist,
Foot it neatly here and there;
And, sweet sprites, the burthen bear.
Hark, hark!
Bow, wow,
The watch-dogs bark;
Bow, wow,
Hark, hark! I hear
The strain of strutting chanticleer
Cry, Cock-a-diddle-dow!

Title: No Loser, No Weeper
Author: Maya Angelou
Source Book: The Language of Love
Publisher: Blackey
Year of Publication: 1989
Comments: The great universal of human experience -- to love and then to lose -- is given a contemporary American voice. I got the blues real bad.

'I hate to lose something,'
then she bent her head
'even a dime, I wish I was dead.
I can't explain it. No more to be said.
Cept I hate to lose something.'

'I lost a doll once and cried for a week.
She could open her eyes, and do all but speak.
I believe she was took, by some doll-snatching-sneak
I tell you, I hate to lose something.'

'A watch of mine once, got up and walked away.
It had twelve numbers on it for the time of day.
I'll never forget it and all I can say
Is I really hate to lose something.'

'Now if I felt that way bout a watch and a toy,
What you think I feel bout my lover-boy?
I ain't threatening you madam, but he is my evening's joy.
And I mean I really hate to lose something.

Title: The Sun's Travels
Author: Robert Louis Stevenson
Source Book: Favorite Poems Old and New
Publisher: Doubleday
Year of Publication: 1957
Comments: The wonder of a familiar fact is recalled; "You've taken your first step into a larger world."

The sun is not abed, when I
At night upon my pillow lie;
Still round the earth his way he takes,
And morning after morning makes.

While here at home, in shining day,
We round the sunny garden play,
Each little Indian sleepyhead
Is being kissed and put to bed.

Title: Dust of Snow
Author: Robert Frost
Source Book: Piping Down the Valleys
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Year of Publication: 1968
Comments: A who's who stops to smell the proverbial you-know-what.

The way a crow
Shook down on me
The dust of snow
From a hemlock tree

Has given me
A change of mood
And saved some part
Of a day I had rued.

Title: When I Heard The Learn'd Astronomer
Author: Uncle Walt
Source Book: recited from memory
Year of Publication:
Comments: A verse from my personal Bible; a frequent uplift when my own charts and diagrams distract me from the awe-inspiring sea of stars.

When I heard the learn'd astronomer,
When the proofs, the figures, were ranged in columns before me,
When I was shown the charts and diagrams, to add, divide, and measure them,
When I sitting heard the astronomer where he lectured with much applause in the lecture-room,
How soon unaccountable I became tired and sick,
Till rising and gliding out I wander'd off by myself,
In the mystical moist night-air, and from time to time,
Look'd up in perfect silence at the stars.
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