N is for Children’s Poets Kenn Nesbitt, Judith Nicholls and Kim Norman, #AtoZChallenge #ZtoA
Kim Norman is the author of twenty children’s books, many in verse, published by Sterling, Scholastic, Penguin/Random House, and forthcoming from FSG and Candlewick. Kim calls herself a “Bedtime reading evangelist.” She has been invited to more than 250 schools around the US and has Skyped with students as far away as Hong Kong and South Korea. She lives in Virginia with her husband and two pug mixes, in a tiny house shaded by giant pecan trees. One of Kim’s poems is in Kenn Nesbitt’s 2016 anthology, One Minute Till Bedtime illustrated by Christoph Niemann. Her website is here.
Here is one of Kim’s Poems:
Nose to Knows
As I gaze at my goldfish’s gulping gills,
in awe of his alien fins and frills,
he probably peers at my ears and nose,
pondering, “What ‘n the heck are those?”
© Kim Norman
Judith wrote her first poem when she was 7. Her first job was writing for a women’s magazine, and after she got married and had three children she became a teacher; it was only later she become a professional writer, and since then she has written or compiled over 50 books for children of all ages. Her poems have appeared in hundreds of anthologies. She has appeared on television programmes for schools and run performances and workshops with pupils or teachers in over 500 schools, from Berwick-on-Tweed to Penzance, The South Bank Centre in London to Strasbourg, California – and dozens in Wiltshire!
Here is a lovely poem by Judith:
gone with the wind,
shiver of air,
I hide, I glide,
I stride through air,
shatter the day-star dappled light
over forest floor.
The world’s in my grasp!
I am windsong,
the arm of the law.
© Judith Nicholls (1990, from DRAGONSFIRE by Judith Nicholls, pub. Faber. Reprinted by permission of the author.)
Kenn’s first children’s poem was written in 1994 after having dinner with a friend whose 4-year-old daughter did everything she could to get out of eating her dinner. He wrote whenever the mood struck him until he published his first collection of poetry The Aliens Have Landed at Our School! illustrated by Margeaux Lucas, Meadowbrook Press in 2001. His first collection of poems, When the Teacher Isn’t Looking: and Other Funny School Poems illustrated by Mike Gordon, was published by Meadowbrook Press in 2005. He has since published many more books with a number of other publishers. His poems have also appeared in magazines, school textbooks, and numerous anthologies, as well as on television, audio CDs and even restaurant placemats. Kenn’s excellent website is here – he tries to post a new poem every week. Kenn Nesbitt is an Ex-Children’s Poetry Laureate in the US.
Here is one of Kenn’s Funny Poems:
To B or Not to B
I bought a black banana,
And a broken baseball bat.
A burst balloon, a busted boat,
A beat-up bowler hat.
I wasn’t being brainy, bright,
or brilliant, but you see,
My brain was boggled after
Being bitten by a bee.
© Kenn Nesbitt