Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Indie Pen-Dance Wednesday - Revel in the extra-terrestrial delights of "Astro Poetica" - Poems with an unearthly theme by Dom Conlon and Jools Wilson (Inkology)

Astro Poetica

Written by Dom Conlon

Illustrated by Jools Wilson

Published by Inkology

I can imagine what it must've been like for Dom Conlon as a kid. Born around the time when space still held infinite possibilities, when NASA were still sending gallant astronauts into space, before the Space Shuttle gave us a glimpse of the sort of space exploration we'd all dreamed about or seen in science fiction movies.

It's a very different world now and Dom's one man mission is to make sure that children today don't forget that space is out there, and hopefully one day they might even get to rocket out to the stars themselves.

Kids absorb poetry like hungry little sponges so it's with great pleasure that we read Dom's poetry anthology where he brings together his love of writing with his love of space, in a brilliant collection that travels around our solar system and beyond.

Dom creates a poem for the stars, for the planets we know, with his trademark humour and wistful wonderings - what if any of us were given the chance to explore space, how would it affect us and what would we write about it?

Charlotte loves poetry - not because we push it on her, but because poems and rhymes exude a cleverness with the language that kids actually admire, and then most deliciously, begin to want to emulate. Sometimes it's fun just to hear Charlotte speaking in rhyme and as her vocabulary expands from the tons of books we consume every week, her rhymes become more complex.

Inspiration comes from many places, and we really loved Dom's collection - as we're complete space nuts ourselves. Charlotte loved the poem about Mars, blushing with embarrassment from the huge cosmic joke of fooling us into believing that one of our nearest neighbours was crawling with little green men.

I had many favourites but loved the homage to astronauts, and the imagery of Saturn spinning on its eternal potter's wheel.

Jools Wilson's brilliant illustrations are a perfect fit for the collection too (and of course kids can more readily absorb a poetry anthology if there are fantastic pics to go along with it). To further inspire kids, Dom has come up with a collection of activities and ideas for ways to explore space from the comfort of your own living room.

"Astro Poetica" as a digital download received some rave reviews, but we're strictly old school and the delight of actually being able to read tangible copies of Dom's work is a bit of a treat.

Look out for "Astro Poetica" available from the Inkology website very soon. In the meantime you can pick up "Astro Poetica" and Dom's other brilliant books on the iTunes Book Store

Charlotte's best bit: Mars - red and blushing.

Daddy's Favourite bit: Astronauts getting a thumbs up and Saturn the eternal potter's wheel