What the Heart Knows: Chants, Charms, and Blessings

What the Heart Knows: Chants, Charms, and Blessings

Hardcover

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Overview

What the Heart Knows: Chants, Charms, and Blessings is a collection of poems to provide comfort, courage, and humor at difficult or daunting moments in life. It conjures forth laments, spells, invocations, chants, blessings, promises, songs, and charms. Here are pleas on how to repair a friendship, wishes to transform one’s life or to slow down time, charms to face the shame of a disapproving crowd, invocations to ask for forgiveness, to understand the mysteries of happiness, and to bravely face a dark and different world. These words help us remember or grieve; they bolster courage and guard against evil; they help us celebrate and give thanks. This elegant gift book also includes a red ribbon for readers to mark their favorite poems.

Poet extraordinaire Joyce Sidman won the Newbery Honor Medal for Dark Emperor and Other Poems of the Night and continues to write poetry for children that has been called "fresh," "inspiring," and "accessible" to her young audience. She is intrigued by the idea of "words of power"—chants and charms that were once believed to have real influence in everyday life. Caldecott Honor-winning Pamela Zagarenski's beautiful art captures a world of emotion and the essence of Sidman's words.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780544106161
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date: 10/08/2013
Pages: 80
Sales rank: 500,964
Product dimensions: 5.70(w) x 9.30(h) x 0.50(d)
Age Range: 12 - 17 Years

About the Author

The poet extraordinaire Joyce Sidman won a Newbery Honor medal for Dark Emperor and Other Poems of the Night and continues to write poetry for children that has been called “fresh,” “inspiring,” and “accessible” to her young audience. She is intrigued by the idea of “words of power”—chants and charms that were once believed to have real influence in everyday life.

The beautiful art of the Caldecott Honor–winning Pamela Zagarenski captures a world of emotion and the essence of Sidman's words.

Read an Excerpt

Chant to Repair a Friendship
(a triolet)
Come, friend, forgive the past;
   I was wronga dn I am grieving.
Tell me that this break won’t last—
take my hand; forgive the past.
   Anger’s brief, but love is vast.
   Take my hand; don’t think of leaving.
Come, friend, forgive the past;
   I was wrong and I am grieving.

Come, Happiness
Happiness,
you’re not what everyone says:
some flashy friend
who shows up with fireworks,
trailing fame and glory.

You are more like a raindrop,
governed by mysterious principles.
You fall from the sky and hit—plop!—with
a cool kiss of surprise.

Or maybe you’re a heartbeat,
always there,
speaking in your low, soft voice,
pumping, warming, strengthening
under the surface of things,
just doing your work.

Happiness, you’re like a breeze
sucked in by eager lungs.
You fill and feed us,
and yet somehow, in the exhale,
you are shared.

So come,
come to us, Happiness.
Bathe us with your cool spray.
Fill us with your splendid breath.
Help us do your work.

Chant Against the Dark
Don’t come close, dark.
Don’t brush my face with your sticky hands.
Stay as cool and distant as a train whistle.
Don’t single me out,
don’t make me answer your questions.
Let me curl here, safe in my circle of light.

Don’t come close, dark.
Don’t speak to me in your crooked tongue.
I don’t want to hear your stories.
I have stories of my own to tell myself all night.

Don’t come close, dark.
Don’t breathe on me.
When the lamp clicks off,
don’t creak and shift
like some wild-eyed horse
waiting for its rider.

Oh, dark,
don’t call my name.

Song of Bravery
This one’s not a sure thing.
I’m not bound to win.
I don’t think I’ll ace it this time.
I won’t break a leg,
make my own luck,
or reach the stars.

The sun is not shining on me today.
The force is not strong.
Before the day is out,
I’ll taste the grit of dust.

Maybe I didn’t do all I could.
Or maybe I did
but there were others who did more.
Maybe I’ll never know.

But here I go—
bones clicking quietly together,
blood flowing dutifully
from heart to hands and back again—
here I go, stepping out
through the door
of my own shadow:
into the glare of the arena
to face the lions.

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What the Heart Knows: Chants, Charms, and Blessings 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Funtoread More than 1 year ago
Terrific little book to pick up and read anytime for inspiration.