The City Sings Green & Other Poems about Welcoming Wildlife

by Erica Silverman (Author) Ginnie Hsu (Illustrator)

The City Sings Green & Other Poems about Welcoming Wildlife
Reading Level: 2nd − 3rd Grade

A unique and artful blend of poetry, science, and activism, this picture book shows how city dwellers can intervene so that nature can work her magic. Perfect for fans of The Curious Garden and Harlem Grown

In Oslo, Norway: citizens create a honeybee highway that stretches from one side of the city to the other, offering flowerpots, resting spots, bee boxes, and beehives—even water fountains—every eight hundred feet.

In the Bronx, New York: a community rallies to clean their river and cheers at the return of the long-lost beaver population.

In Busselton, Australia: people make a rope bridge that swings high above speeding cars, creating a safe path for tree-hopping possums and squirrels alike.

Through a mix of lyrical poems, real-life success stories, and bouquet-bright artwork, The City Sings Green explores the environmental impact of humans and showcases the many ways that we can rewild cities across the globe. Together, we can welcome nature back!

Detailed back matter includes sources, links to explore, ways to help, and recommended reading.

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Kirkus Reviews

Upbeat conservationist verse.


Silverman celebrates 11 successful projects that have resulted in wildlife returning to their previously disturbed, now mostly urban habitats. Additional prose text offers more comprehensive information, while Hsu's sunny acrylic-gouache illustrations expand on program details. With generous back matter, this makes an upbeat addition to primary ecology units.

Publishers Weekly

Place-based poetry extols cities that have undertaken rewilding efforts in this uplifting poetry collection from Silverman. Varied verse and accompanying explanatory prose profiles metropolitan eco-efforts such as a bee highway in Oslo, Norway; a beach cleanup in Mumbai, India; a possum rope bridge in Busselton, Australia; and a penguin tunnel in Oamaru, New Zealand. A titular poem sets the tone with rhythmic stanzas spoken from the perspective of a nameless city that urges "Green me," "Clean me," "Rewild me." Silverman pens some pieces from the perspective of wildlife ("In your rivers and on your shores--/ We are the stars of Singapore"), while others narrate human conservation efforts ("In this oasis that we made, / we watched them arrive"). Colorful wildflowers, googly eyed animals, and budding environmentalists of different skin tones populate Hsu's smudgy acrylic gouache and digital paintings, which amplify the inspirational examples featured. Further resources conclude. Ages 4-8. (Apr.)

Copyright 2024 Publishers Weekly, LLC Used with permission.

Review quotes

Lexile Measure
Guided Reading Level
Clarion Books
Publication date
April 20, 2024
BISAC categories
JUV002000 - Juvenile Fiction | Animals | General
JUV029010 - Juvenile Fiction | Nature & the Natural World | Environment
JUV070000 - Juvenile Fiction | Poetry (see also Stories in Verse)
Library of Congress categories

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