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[Poetry Friday] We Need To Carry Others’ Hearts With Us

poetry friday

Myra here.

I have to admit that I have to really find my groove back into the Poetry Friday community. Things have been so crazy hectic in the university, particularly with the marking period and my traveling, that I haven’t really found the time to visit other blogs. My deepest apologies. I will get around to it at one point – and you’d just see all my comments at one go. While we do post every single day, I really do miss being more visible in other people’s blogs. I feel more than ever how important it is to build community, especially given trying times ahead of us.  Poetry Friday this week is hosted by Friendly Fairy Tales.


We have launched our reading theme until the end of the year. However, we are struggling to find really great fantasy-themed poems. If you know of any, please do share with us and we will hunt those down. I have to admit that I turn to fantasy and poetry more these days to just find some semblance of peace and quiet. And it is with such pleasure that I finally managed to get this book for our research project.


I Carry Your Heart With Me

Written by E. E. Cummings
Illustrated by Mati McDonough
Published by Cameron + Company (2014)
ISBN-10: 1937359522
ISBN-13: 9781937359522

This has always been one of my favourite e. e. cummings poem. While I would have loved it to be romantically-themed as Sandburg’s A Love Poem with pictures by Anita Lobel:


This one was interpreted by McDonough as a mother-and-child kind of love:


There is that play in the words of literally carrying a being inside one’s self when one conceives that was captured perfectly in the artist’s visual narrative – up to that time when the mother gives birth and nurtures the child.


I thought the collage style really worked well, giving the poem that full-bodied sensation of being enveloped in another’s love – matched by bold, solid, bright colours.


I think now is the time when we need to carry others’ hearts with us wherever we go. We need to be able to choose light over dark, love over hate – now, more than ever.


Myra is a Teacher Educator and a registered clinical psychologist based in Al Ain, United Arab Emirates. Prior to moving to the Middle East, she lived for eleven years in Singapore serving as a teacher educator. She has edited five books on rediscovering children’s literature in Asia (with a focus on the Philippines, Malaysia, India, China, Japan) as part of the proceedings for the Asian Festival of Children’s Content where she served as the Chair of the Programme Committee for the Asian Children’s Writers and Illustrators Conference from 2011 until 2019. While she is an academic by day, she is a closet poet and a book hunter at heart. When she is not reading or writing about books or planning her next reads, she is hoping desperately to smash that shuttlecock to smithereens because Badminton Is Life (still looking for badminton courts here at UAE - suggestions are most welcome).

7 comments on “[Poetry Friday] We Need To Carry Others’ Hearts With Us

  1. Beautiful! I hadn’t thought of that as a parent-child poem before, but it works. Those collages are gorgeous. I put together a list of fantasy poems a while back: (Edgar Allan Poe, Lewis Carroll, Carol Ann Duffy…)


  2. Those illustrations are just fantastic! I love the papercut layers, so joyful and beautiful.


  3. I bought this book when it came out, and do love it, Myra. I understand how busy you are, and what a time politically it has been for you recently, hoping that we can all work hard together for a kinder world. Thanks!


  4. The mother-child perspective is surprising, but I really like it! What a charming book. The collage illustrations suit the poem so well. Hang in there, Myra. I, too, am discovering that I can only do so much.


  5. This sounds like a neat book! 😀


  6. Beautiful illustrations. Mother love is powerful stuff. I can see why it’s a kid’s book with that interpretation.


  7. Pingback: [Poetry Friday] Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s “How Do I Love Thee” Brought To Life by Mati McDonough – Gathering Books

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