Poetry Friday – Poems to Learn by Heart

This collection by Caroline Kennedy, illustrated by Jon J Muth comes with a very powerful introduction. In it, Ms. Kennedy states:

“Poets distill life’s lessons into the fewest possible words. But those tiny packages of thought contain worlds of images and experiences and feelings. If our circumstances change and things seem to be falling apart, we can recall a poem that reassures us. If we find ourselves in unfamiliar or frightening surroundings, a poem can remind us that others have journeyed far and returned safely home. If we learn poems by heart, we will always have their wisdom to draw on, and we gain understanding that no one can take away.”

I chose a poem I memorized as a child for this week’s selection:

I’d Love to Be a Fairy’s Child (by Robert Graves)

Children born of fairy stock

Never need for shirt or frock,

Never want for food or fire,

Always get their heart’s desire:

Jingle pockets full of gold,

Marry when they’re seven years old.

Every fairy child may keep

Two strong ponies and ten sheep;

All have houses, each his own,

Built of brick or granite stone;

They live on cherries, they run wild —

I’d love to be a Fairy’s child.

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