Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Poetry Review: The Mouse of Amherst

I just posted a review of Elizabeth Spire's book The Mouse of Amherst. It's a charming tale told through the eyes of a little white mouse who lives in a hole in the wall in Emily Dickinson's room.

It's been an Emily Dickinson kind of month. With the sweet girl, I read the Emily Dickinson volume in the Poetry for Young People series. Late in the evenings, a bit at a time, I've been watching a video version of Julie Harris' one-woman play The Belle of Amherst, recorded sometime in the late 1970s, I think. It's a fascinating (somehow both funny and sad) portrait of the reclusive genius. I've also been meandering my way through a lovely book called Emily Dickinson's Gardens, as much about her flowers as it is about her life and poems, hence good springtime reading (though it actually cycles through all four seasons).

I'm hoping to pull together a unit study on Dickinson soon, as I keep getting ideas for supplemental activities and learning trails. Some of her poems definitely spoke to the sweet girl, who surprised me by choosing the poem "A Letter to a Bee" (the one that begins "Bee, I'm Expecting You...") for memorization. Not the easiest of Emily's poems to memorize, and yet she's done it and done it well. I think we'll definitely return to Dickinson again in the years to come!

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