Compiled by Grace Nicholls
As I’m reviewing top class poetry anthologies from the past, I have to include this collection from poets around the world which was very influential at the time it was published in 1990 (Puffin) and deserves new attention. The range of ideas, musical rhythms, telling phrases and humour is huge. Every teacher will recognise the potential for learning and for wonder whether in Dionne Brand’s ‘Wind’ or Maya Angelou’s study of old age or the beating rhythms of life expressed: Friday night baking; school life; scorpions and crabs; families; skipping ropes and alligators. John Agard’s ‘Poetry Jump Up’ sums it up: the collection is like a carnival of life and shows how poetry can reach us all with ‘plenty perspiration and a little inspiration’.