US Poet Laureate Joy Harjo's iconic poem "Remember," illustrated by Caldecott Medalist Michaela Goade, invites young readers to pause and reflect on the wonder of the world around them, and to remember the importance of their place in it.
Remember the sky you were born under,
Know each of the star's stories.
Remember the moon, know who she is.
Remember the sun's birth at dawn,
That is the strongest point of time.
So begins the picture book adaptation of the renowned poem that encourages young readers to reflect on family, nature, and their heritage. In simple and direct language, Harjo, a member of the Mvskoke Nation, urges readers to pay close attention to who they are, the world they were born into, and how all inhabitants on earth are connected. Michaela Goade, drawing from her Tlingit culture, has created vivid illustrations that make the words come alive in an engaging and accessible way.
This timeless poem paired with magnificent paintings makes for a picture book that is a true celebration of life and our human role within it.
In an expansive poem turned picture book written by former U.S. poet laureate Harjo, a member of the Mvskoke Nation, and illustrated by Caldecott Medalist Goade, a member of the Tlingit Nation, the creators explore people's links to one another and to nature. Imperative lines bid readers to remember their bond with the cosmos ("the sky that you were born under"), their birth and parents ("how your mother/ struggled to give you form and breath"), the earth ("whose skin you are"), and its fauna and flora ("alive poems"). Created in watercolor, gouache, and colored pencil, Goade's lushly hued, multilayered images combine intricate patterns, form-line designs, and realistic horizons in their portrayals of humans and the natural world interacting. On one rust-hued spread, a child touches the earth on the verso, an act that emanates visually into the ground; on the recto, a handprint's image is delicately layered with a paw print, fungi and mycelium, shells and fish skeletons, birds in flight, and much, much more. Evoking the cyclical feeling of a slow breath in and out, it's a smartly constructed, reflective picture book based in connection and noticing: "Remember all is in motion, / is growing, is you." Creators' notes conclude. Ages 4-8. Author's agent: Jin Auh, Wylie Agency. Illustrator's agent: Kirsten Hall, Catbird Productions. (Mar.)Copyright 2023 Publishers Weekly, LLC Used with permission.