Sunday, October 25, 2020

The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo

The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo was published in 2018 and is a novel written in verse. This is one of my favorite books that I read this year. Acevedo's writing is beautiful. I listened to the novel and it was brilliantly narrated by the author. In fact as soon as it ended, I began listening to it again - it's that good. 

Xiomara Batista is the main character and she is a poet. She tells her story through poems. Often she shares the feelings of her heart, but in reality, she doesn't share those thoughts with anyone else. Through her story the reader knows what it is like to be sexually harassed, to have a first period, to be a twin, to feel your voice is being silenced, to feel you have a voice, to question religion, to question one's relationship to those they love, and to feel responsible for unwanted attention from men. 

This story is about Xiomara finding her voice in a home and a society who tries to quiet her, and her voice is strong, powerful, and beautiful. One of my favorite poems was "How I Feel about Attention" I'll share the first and last verse of this poem. 

"If Medusa was Dominican 
and had a daughter, I think I'd be her. 
I look and feel like a myth. 
A story distorted, waiting for others to stop
and stare. 

"If I was her kid, Medusa would tell me her secrets:
how it is that her looks stop men
in their tracks            why they still keep on coming. 
How she outmaneuvers them when they do" (48). 

I plan on buying all Acevedo’s other books. 

Angela Jensen donated 13 copies of If You Give a Dog a Donut by Laura Numeroff and Felicia Bond to our NICU book project. 

We’ve been able to give books to every baby who has been in our NICU this year because of all our generous donors. Thank you. 

 Link to our NICU book registry to donate books to babies in the newborn intensive care unit so their parents can read to them while they grow. You can also donate gently used books to our project by sending them to me or to Angie. Email me for a mailing address. We can use both English and Spanish books. If you have a graduate of the NICU, or if you have a baby whose life you would like to honor by donating books to this project, let me know, and I can make a book plate with their name for the books you donate.

Read to a child today even if that child is you. 

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