Leave Your Sleep/ #PPBF

Hi Readers!

It has come to my attention that I am poverty-stricken. I am poor in poetry knowledge. For instance I never read books in verse or rhyming picture books. I thought I would remedy that a little in todays choice. Although not a picture book in verse it is about poems. I will tell you.

Book cover for Leave Your Sleep_Title : Leave Your Sleep, a Collection of Classic Children’s Poetry

Author/ Illustrator : Natalie Merchant and Barbara McClintock

Publishing info : Frances Foster Books / mackids.com/ Poems / for ages k through six grade

Themes : Poetry, music, Famous Poets, songs

First Three Lines : From the introduction:  “This collection of songs represents the long conversation I had with my daughter during the first six years of her life. It documents our word of mouth tradition in the poems, stories, and songs that I found to delight and teach her — this parade of witches and circus ponies, a Chinese princess and a janitor’s boy. I tried to show her that speech could  be the most delightful toy in her possession and that her mother tongue is rich with musical rhythms and rhymes.”

Summary from Jacket : Natalie Merchant’s double album Leave Your Sleep transformed a wonderful selection of classic children’s poetry into a delightful collection of original songs with the Horn Book called “as much a work about childhood as it is a work for children.” Now a magical picture book, leave Your Sleep opens the door to a world of poems and songs filled with witches and fearless girls, blind men and elephants, giants and sailors and dancing bears. Natalie Merchant’s brilliant musical renderings, selected from her highly praised leave Your Sleep album,share the stage with Barbara McClintock’s richly imagined art to create a memorable reading, looking, and listening experience. This unique package includes a full-length CD with nineteen songs, one for each poem in the book. “

Resources : Leave Your Sleep on You Tube :

More about it on Horn books :

For a teacher guide pdf :

Alternatively one can ask a child to tell or write his or her own poem and put it into song. Or make up a song. And then draw a picture of it.

Why I love it : The cover captivated me and I have long needed to read poetry. I am sorry to admit it but I am ignorant of poetry. I thought starting with these poems for children would be ea gentle beginning. And it was. The  poems turned songs delighted me. I am sure some fo you know them. “The Land of Nod” — Robert Louis Stevenson

“The Dancing Bear” — Albert Bigelow Paine

“The Janitor’s Boy” — Nathalia Crane

“Adventures of Isabel” — Ogden Nash

“ Bleezer’s Ice-Cream” — Jack Prelutsky

“Old Mother Hubbard & Her Dog Revisited” — John Yeoman

Just to name a few.

The illustrations were marvelous and made me look long and hard. I was thrilled to pick up this book.

So if you want to join other PPBF writers go look at Susanna Hill’s site for today and enjoy other reviews on her links. also you can click on Perfect Picture Books and find books categorized by theme or alphabetized. No matter which way you go it will be fun.

For the complete list of books with resources, please visit Perfect Picture Books.

And for her Pinterst board look here : https://www.pinterest.com/susannaleonard/

Also there is another blog Susanna started with alphabetizing here :

So you see? There is no scarcity of places to look for picture books. Enjoy!!

See you on Tuesday! and again next Friday with another Perfect Picture Book.

My Books! in logo by Margot Finke.

My Books! in logo by Margot Finke.


About ClaraBowmanJahn

Journal writer. Author of "Annie's Special Day" And coauthor of Edmund Pickle Chin, A Donkey Rescue Story." Proud mother and grandmother of wonderful kids. Wife of brilliant husband. Servant of two cats. Member of Pennwriters and SCBWI.
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16 Responses to Leave Your Sleep/ #PPBF

  1. Clarbojahn, I love your blog. I liked your facebook and will see how to join your blog. Congratulations on your many blog awards and your publishing history. I love children’s books and always enjoyed reading them to my five children. I write YA short stories and had a few published in Cricket Magazine. Thank you for visiting my Adventures in Writing blog. Perhaps we could connect to see if we could be critique partners.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I loved Where the Sidewalk Ends as a child, but I never did hear about any other children’s poetry books, so this is intriguing. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • clarbojahn says:

      Thanks, Christie! What I know of Where The Sidewalk ends is by Silverstien but Leave Your Sleep is poems by many different poets and compiled by Natalie Merchant. She made them into songs as well. 🙂


  3. ManjuBeth says:

    Thanks for sharing this collection. I’m curious about “ Bleezer’s Ice-Cream” — Jack Prelutsky. I usually like his poems. Do you have a favorite one?


  4. It reminds me of the books I read and loved as a child. What a beautiful collection of poems. It sounds enchanting! Lovely choice,

    Liked by 1 person

    • clarbojahn says:

      Thanks so much, Patricia!

      You are well read indeed. Both as a child and now as adult. I value your opinion. I think you will like this. 🙂


  5. Joanna says:

    I always think it is a great addition to include a CD with children’s poetry as they have to be read aloud and while it is great to do with a caregiver it is also lovely to listen to professional narration.

    Liked by 1 person

    • clarbojahn says:

      Thanks Joanna!

      I agree and these are actual poems turned into songs. beautiful. Every child will find these poems easy to understand and love. 🙂


  6. I’m curious about this book because I liked Natalie Merchant when she was with 10,000 Maniacs, and the art is lovely!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. this looks like fun. I loved being read to, as a kid, and especially “the land of Nod”.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Great pick! 😀 Sounds like a very cool book!


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