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maggie and milly and molly and may by e.e. cummings

maggie and molly and milly and may

maggie and molly and milly and may
went down to the beach(to play one day)

and maggie discovered a shell that sang
so sweetly she couldn't remember her troubles,and

milly befriended a stranded star
whose rays five languid fingers were;

and molly was chased by a horrible thing
which raced sideways while blowing bubbles:and

may came home with a smooth round stone
as small as a world and as large as alone.

For whatever we lost(like a you or a me)
it's always ourselves we find in the sea.

- e.e. cummings

(my favorite ee cummings poem. pictures takes by me at Torrey Pines State Beach in California. Cairns created by Aidan & Liane)

*** Natalie Merchant recently release the album Leave Your Sleep, which is a collection of poetry, mostly children's, set to music and includes a version of maggie, milly, molly and may. The album is the result of years raising her daughter, who is now 6, and instilling a love of language and sense of the playfulness of words in her. In the liner notes for the album Merchant shares some wonderful thoughts about the importance of poets and poetry and how she is relatively new to her appreciation of the art form and what she has learned. I recommend giving it a listen - the musical styles are very diverse.***


I didn't know this poem but I'm glad I've found it now. The sea is always refreshing and renewing. And I love the photo of the cairns - just perfect. Thanks for the little oasis of calm in my day today.
Tanya said…
Excellent! I was hoping that these poems (and picture) would be little pockets of peace and reflection for someone out there...
T. said…
I heard Natalie's sung version of this poem a few months ago and it has since sweetly haunted my every re-reading of it to my daughter.
Greg Olson said…
Another great poem. I am going to show my kids the pictures you put with it. Thank you. I also loved The Fog that you posted earlier in the week.

The CD sounds neat.

Have you come across any CDs where children's poems are read out loud?

We have one with Shel Silverstein poems and we all love it! I would like to get another one.
Tanya said…
Greg - Last year I reviewed a book of poetry called "The Tree that Time Built." Click on the author HOBERMAN on my blog an that will be three or four books down. It is an amazing collection of poems written by adults selected with kids in mind that is a celebration of nature, science and imagination. And, it comes with a CD of most of the authors reading their works. The list of poets is mind boggling... Silverstein is awesome, too.

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