This is a collection from one of those poetry contests that makes everyone a winner and then puts all the winners into a book and then sells the winners copies of the book for $50. Full disclosure: I appeared in one of these books in 1984, and my sainted mother bought a copy. I probably even still have the copy of the Henderson Highlighter that reprinted the poem. But I digress. As for book quality, this isn’t the phone directory of the olden days like my poem appeared in, with 15 poems to a page of newsprint. This is actually like a real book of poems, with one or two per page.
Unfortunately, the poems aren’t that much better than I could have written in the sixth grade. I’m sorry, that’s not true; some of them are on more sophisticated subject matter, but that doesn’t mean that many of them are any good.
On the one hand, it really is awful that I subjected my children to hearing these as I read them aloud. On the other, it’s good to run through a bunch of these poems, especially after one has gotten a little bored with Ogden Nash, to recognize, again, what good poetry is.