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IS THIS FOREVER, OR WHAT? by Naomi Shihab Nye


Poems and Paintings from Texas

edited by Naomi Shihab Nye

Pub Date: March 1st, 2004
ISBN: 0-06-051178-8
Publisher: Greenwillow Books

This sumptuously designed gathering of poetry and paintings from 140 Texans (or former Texans) will lead readers not so much to that state specifically, as to a state of mind: a “sense of generous horizons and spaciousness,” to quote the much-honored editor. Ranging in style from abstract to photorealistic, the 44 paintings include still lifes, landscapes, portraits of people or wildlife, evocations of folk art, pop art, or expressionistic studies in color. The poetry, being all free verse and, with a single exception (plus scattered phrases), in English, is less varied in voice or imagery, but flows smoothly from one selection to the next. Despite recurring references to snakes, heat, pecans, and the sound of running water, it deals less with distinctively regional topics than with such universal themes as the immigrant experience, small-town customers at the Dairy Queen, vivid childhood memories, personal reflections, absent friends, or contemplations of nature. Except for Pat Mora, Sandra Cisneros, and a handful of others, these poets and artists have had little or no exposure nationwide; Nye has done them a real service with this deep (though not wide) cross-section. (biographical notes, indexes) (Poetry. YA)