Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Skywriting: Poems to Fly

Skywriting: Poems to Fly

J. Patrick Lewis
Illustrator:  Laszlo Kubinyi 
Poetry Picture Book
For ages 6 to 10
Creative Editions, 2010   ISBN: 978-1568462035

For centuries, man has dreamed of flying. There is the story of Icarus who “rose on wings of wax” only to plunge to earth again when the heat of the sun melted his wings. For a while, man had a grand time floating across the sky in hot air balloons. The Montgolfier brothers made a famous twenty-five minute flight above Paris that was witnessed by none other than Benjamin Franklin himself, who was “without his kite!”

Though the hot air balloons were quite successful, there were still those who wanted to create a flying machine that had wings. Some men created machines with wings that flapped, and they barely left the ground. Then two brothers developed a flying machine that did fly, and on a cold December day, “aviation’s door” was opened.

For this very special collection of poems, J. Patrick Lewis has written thirteen very different poems about man’s passion for and fascination with flight. With humor and beautiful word imagery, the poet takes us on a journey from Icarus’ unfortunate flight, to the creation of the Nighthawk and the space shuttle. To accompany the poems, Laszlo Kubinyi has created beautiful illustrations that are rich with detail and that have a vintage postcard feel.

Endnotes at the back of the book provide readers with further information about the thirteen topics covered in the poems.