Not Every Day an Aurora Borealis for Your Birthday: A Love Poem by Carl Sandburg

Carl Sandburg, Author, Anita Lobel, Illustrator Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers $13 (24p) ISBN 978-0-679-88170-4
Lobel's (Princess Furball) joyous, shimmering paintings pay homage to Sandburg's never-before-published poem of love and celebration with generous doses of warmth and whimsy. The poem describes a young man's efforts to capture an elusive aurora borealis to give his love on her birthday; simple in structure, Sandburg's lines build in urgency, revealing the magnitude of the suitor's wish to demonstrate the depth of his feelings. Lobel picks up on the imagery of the aurora borealis, which Sandburg describes as ""Slippery.... You think you have hold of it--but it is sliding away off your hands."" Love is, of course, just as intangible, an abstract notion Lobel ably conveys. Depicting the young man's struggle to capture the untamable--which she paints in vivid pastel hues of pink, yellow, green and blue--Lobel casts the northern lights as an immense sheet of rainbow-hued cellophane with a will of its own. Its hot white center is most apparent at night; when in a snowy clime, it reveals its blue side. The pictures within the small trim size alternately bleed and stand within frames of white, and Lobel's perspectives frequently are skewed and slippery themselves. Although the suitor's frustration with the mammoth task is evident and, in Lobel's depiction, humorous, the emotions are touchingly realistic. The final scene of the lovers, united at last, under a brilliant nighttime sky says it all--love makes people feel good, and so will this book. All ages. (Dec.)
Reviewed on: 12/01/1997
Release date: 12/01/1997
X
Stay ahead with
Tip Sheet!
Free newsletter: the hottest new books, features and more
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Email Address

Password

Log In Lost Password

PW has integrated its print and digital subscriptions, offering exciting new benefits to subscribers, who are now entitled to both the print edition and the digital editions of PW (online or via our app). For instructions on how to set up your accout for digital access, click here. For more information, click here.

The part of the site you are trying to access is now available to subscribers only. Subscribers: to set up your digital subscription with the new system (if you have not done so already), click here. To subscribe, click here.

Email pw@pubservice.com with questions.

Not Registered? Click here.