Books Books by Region Contours of Love Early Readers International Lifespan of a Reader Poetry Poetry Friday Reading Themes

[Poetry Friday] The Moon’s Love in Poetry from Portuguese Father and Son Duo Jose Jorge Letria and Andre Letria

The Moon Has Written You A Poem

poetry friday

Myra here.

It’s been awhile since I’ve joined the Poetry Friday community. To welcome the New Year and to also share our current reading theme on love, I thought I might as well step in this week, and give Fats and Iphigene a slight reprieve. Thank you to Bookseedstudio for hosting this week.

The Moon Has Written You A Poem

Written By: José Jorge Letria Illustrated by: André Letria Translated and Adapted by: Maurice Riordan
Published by: Wingedchariot Press, 2006
ISBN: 1905341008 (ISBN13: 9781905341009). Borrowed through inter-library loan from Jurong West Public Library. Book photos taken by me.

I learned about Portuguese father-and-son author-illustrator while I was a research fellow at the International Youth Library in Munich last year. When I discovered that they have a translated poetry book in English, I immediately hunted it down from the library.

The subtitle indicated that it is a collection of “poems to read with children on moonlit nights” and is dedicated to “Rodrigo who has just arrived.” Think of a gorgeously illustrated, evocative book of poems with a distinct message of love that feels very much like a grandparent reading rhythmic verse to his grandchild.

It is a love that spans the entire universe, as the moon itself has been asked to sing songs to a young one who “just arrived.” While I am generally not a fan of rhyming text, and I did feel that something may have been lost in translation here, it remains a precious book that deserves to be snuggled with.

I also love André Letria’s art – the bold bright strokes, the brilliant blues, and the images that extend outside of the page, such is its grand scale, like a love that can not ever be contained.

There is also an eerie trademark to Letria’s art that has the taste of magical realism, which is a perfect fit to Jose Jorge Letria’s fanciful imaginings filled with so much soul, like cerulean heart-songs.

This luminous book is also a tribute to the written word, to lilting verse, and to family and heritage. Find it and have the moon recite a poem to you and your little ones.

#LitWorld2018GB Update: 6 of 40 (Portugal)

Free Delivery on all Books at the Book Depository

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).

15 comments on “[Poetry Friday] The Moon’s Love in Poetry from Portuguese Father and Son Duo Jose Jorge Letria and Andre Letria

  1. Myra GB – this sounds & looks luminous. And it’s leading us into some sky magic close to these times when so many of us experienced Supermoon Love. I’m expecting to look for this book soon. Many appreciations.

    (And please accept my apologies for the miscue from yesterday. Entirely my fault!)

    May the moon shine down on you with even more Light than you already share.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh my, I love poetry and writing about the moon, Myra. This looks wonderful. It was rather a surprise to read the rhyming, unexpected from a translation. But it sounds nice & I will look for it.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Myra, this book sounds lovely and it is gorgeous! I think ‘luminous’ might be just the right word. Thanks for introducing it!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I love the illustrations and sample poems. Thanks for sharing it. I hope I can locate a copy myself.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m so glad for the visit today.What a gorgeous book….the idea of greeting one who has just arrived, infant, immigrant, grandparent is beautiful. I agree that this book is to be snuggled with. The illustrations are really neat. I love the otherworldly look to them. Thank you for sharing this gem. I wonder how I could get my hands on it?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Linda! In the event that you are unable to find it in your local library, you can just click on the image of the book cover above and it will lead you directly to Book Depository where you can purchase it and it delivers right to your doorstep. 🙂


  6. maryleehahn

    So much to love about this book!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. This book looks gorgeous! It seems to pair well with Matt de la Pena’s LOVE. Thanks for sharing.


  8. Such a find – that art is particularly enchanting. Perfect to enjoy for the super-blue-blood-moon coming later this month! Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Beautiful indeed–I hope to track it down for the moon study we do in 2nd grade every year. Thank you for sharing, and glad to have you back!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. A post that shines a lovely moonlight on me. Thanks!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. An enchanting and gorgeous book, I must find it and soak it in. The images are beautiful–they remind me a bit of the surrealist Spanish artist from the 30’s Remedios Varo, thanks so much for sharing it with us!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Thank you for sharing this enchanting book, Myra! I love the idea of the moon writing a poem. It’s a great springboard for young poets, I think.


  13. Keri Collins Lewis

    Gorgeous artwork. I’m glad we are both popping back in this week, Myra!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Pingback: [Saturday Reads] Round Up of My Literary Journey and My Best in Books Across Quarterly Reading Themes – Gathering Books

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: