Example: Lyrical Prose






Loving Hands



by Tony Johnston art by Amy June Bates-Candlewick Press


A child/ is born/ one win/ter day -/-/-/-/


His moth/er calls/ him lamb. -/-/-/


She hums/ a tune/ that has/ no words -/-/-/-/


and holds/ her bab/y’s hands. -/-/-/



The bab/y wakes./ The bab/y sleeps.-/-/ +-/-/


And grow./ One day/ he stands.-/+-/-/


He falt/ers like/ a wob/bly colt. -/-/-/-/


His moth/er holds/ his hands.-/-/-/


Why does this work and how can it help you?


  • Did you notice that the first stanza has two near rhymes and the second stanza has true rhymes.


  • Did you notice it holds its rhythm all the way through?


This concept book has more near rhymes that true rhymes. A rhyme crime in poetry. 


However this is lyrical prose, that just happens to have a rhythm of iamb and anapest. Something that confuses the poet, yet, engages the reader. 


A poignant story that in my opinion, is well done!



Pea Pod Lullaby 




by Glenda Millard art by Stephen Michael -Candlewick Press


I am the small green pea


you are the tender pod.


hold me.



I am the diving kite


you are the bow-tied tail.


steady me.



I am the drifting boat


you are the quiet deep


buoy me.


Why does the work and how can it help you?


  • Did you notice the use  of diction to create a tone a mood and imagery. Thereby bringing the reader into the scene.


  • Did you notice the use of connotation. The emotional, social overtones of a word. The easiest way to use these feeling words is 

in the lines that do not rhyme. 


  • Did you notice the use of contrasts. One line makes the statement. The next line makes the contrasting statement. The last 

line makes a bridge. 




Example: Metrical Variance




DO YOUR EARS HANG LOW 




by Jenny Cooper art by Jenny Cooper-Sterling Children's Books


Do/ your ears/ hang low? +/-/-/ 3 BEATS


Do/ they wob/ble to/ and fro? +/-/-/-/ 4 BEATS


Can/ you tie/ them in/ a knot? +/-/-/-/ 4 BEATS


Can/ you tie/ them in/ a bow? +/-/-/-/ 4 BEATS



Can/ you throw/ them o’er/ your should/er +/-/-/-/- 4 BEATS


Like/ a con/tinen/tal sold/ier? +/-/-/-/- 4 BEATS


Do/ you ears/ hang low? +/-/-/ 3 BEATS


Why does this work and how can it help you?


  • Did you notice the metrical variance  with three beats and  four beats? This keeps the story from becoming sing-


songy, uninteresting and loosing the reader.

  • Did you notice that the third line rhymes with nothing? This give the writer greater freedom in the telling of the story.

  • Did you notice the use of a refrain?

Example: The use of the aside





THE LYING KING




Written and illustrated  by Alex Beard-Greenleaf Book Group Press



Once/ there was/ a king -/-/-/


Who liked/ to tell/ lies. -/-/-/


He said/ it was/ day -/-/-/


Beneath/ the night/ skies. -/-/-/


                      “Good Morning!”


When/ it was/ wet, -/-/-/


He said/ it was/ dry. -/-/-/


                     “Not a cloud in the sky.”


He bragged/ about -/-/


How high/ he could/ fly. -/-/-/


                    “Wheee…”


Why does this work and how can it help you?


  • Did you notice the use of the aside?

  • You are not limited in the development of character.

This enables you to go from showing to telling.


Example: Lyrical Prose




BRIANNA BRIGHT, 


BALLERINA KNIGHT



by Pam Calvert art by Liana Hee -Two Lions Books


Brianna Bright’s tiny heart longed to dance.


Unfortunately, her feet didn’t follow.


When practicing, she pranced


And pique'd and pivoted…


Right into the palace pool


Ploink!


She plie'd onto to her pet poodle, Pixie,


And frappe'd into the fountain


Flipping a frog.


Why does this work and how can it help you?

  • This is lyrical prose.

  • Did you notice the use of alliteration and  onomatopoeia?

  • There is a balance between lyrical language and purple prose. 

Purple prose is draws attention to it, thereby obscuring the story itself.


Purple prose uses big and impressive words when simple will do.


Purple prose is filled with runaway metaphors and wordiness.


     

Example: Diction Choices




GOOD NIGHT, BUNNY





by  Lauren Thompson art by Stephanie Yue -Orchard Books


Good night,/ log/ and splash/y creek. -/ +/-/-/


Good night,/ mous/ies all/ a squeak. -/+/-/-/


Good night,/ cat/tails -/+/-


And moon/light glow. -/-/


Good night,/ min/nows swim/ming slow. -/+/-/-/


Why does this work and how can it help you?


  • Did you notice the diction? Specific word choices that evoke an emotional reaction? Like "mousies all a squeak." And 

"minnows swimming slow?" Connotation is the feeling a word stirs up. These definite nuances take a story from acceptable to 

powerful and create an experience for the reader.


  • Did you notice the metrical variance? From four beats per line to two beats per line. This keeps the story from becoming sing-

songy. Like music it creates punch where you need it.


Example: Metrical Variance




Bear Can't Sleep





by Karma Wilson art by Jane Chapman -Margret K. McElderry Books


In his home/ in the forest,  --/--/


While the cold/ + wind blows, --/--/


+ Bear snug/gles in his/ + quilt +-/--/+/


From his nose/ to his toes.--/--/



While the snow/+ flakes fall--/+-/


And the drifts/ + pile high. --/+-/


+ Bear toss/es and he/ + turns, +-/--/+/


+ Bear moans/ and he sighs. +-/--/



He stares/ at the wall; +-/--/


he’s not tired/ at all. --/+-/


And the bear can’t sleep! --/ / /


Why does this work and how can this rhyme scheme help you?


  • Did you notice the metrical variance of two beats, two beats, three beats, two beats.


  • Did you notice the refrain and the use of the spondee? 

  • Did you notice the variance with in the refrain, with two beats, two beats, three beats.




The Further Adventures of THE OWL and the PUSSY-CAT




by  Julia Donaldson art by  Charlotte Yoake -Puffin Books



The owl/ and the puss/y cat/ went to sleep. -/--/-/--/


By the light/ of the moon/ so pale. A --/--/-/


Their bea/utiful ring/ was tied with/ a string. -/--/--/-/


In a bow/ round the puss/y cat’s tail. A --/--/--/


They dreamed/ of mice, / and rasp/berry ice, -/-/-/--/


While slum/ber ing cheek/ to cheek. B -/--/-/


But down/ flew a crow/ who unravel/ed the bow. -/--/--/--/


And flew off/ with the ring/ in his beak. B --/--/--/


His beak B -/


His beak B -/


And flew off/ with the ring/ in his beak. B --/--/--/


Why does this work and how can this rhyme scheme help you?


  • Did you notice the end rhyme is every other line? This gives the writer freedom with story, plot and character development. 

  • Did you notice the use of internal rhyme, thereby enhancing its musicality?

  • Did you notice the sharp use of metrical variance, with two stanzas’ having only one hard beat? This throws the reader off, 

because he is expecting a certain rhythm. A technique for arresting the attention of the reader. 



Example: Refrain, Repetition and Onomatopoeia




The Goodnight Train Rolls On




by June Sobel art by Laura Huliska-Beith -Houghton Mifflin Harcourt 2018



Stars/ are twinkl/ing. Moon/ shines bright. -/-/-/-/


The Good/night Train/ chugs through/ the night. -/-/-/-/


Dream dust/ lands/ on sleep/y heads. -/-/-/-/


The port/er smiles/ and fluffs/ the beds. -/-/-/-/


Chugga! Chugga!


Shhhhhhh! Shhhhhhh!


Why does this work and how can it help you?


  • Did you notice the long vowels that slow the pacing and create a heavier tone? 


  • Did you notice the use of onomatopoeia? Chugga, chugga and shhhhhhh, shhhhhhh. A heightened use of sound takes your 

writing to a new level. It can elicit a specific emotion, like peace.


  • Did you notice the use of a refrain. The child will be able to repeat this sound along with you. Almost putting the child to sleep. 




Tree Song





by Tiffany Stone art by Holly Hatam -Annick Press Ltd



-Hushhhhhhhhhhh/ warns wind / -/


And whirls/ seed down. A -/-/


-Seed/ lies, si/lent, on/ the ground. A -/-/-/-/



-Oh/ so quiet, -/-/


-Not/ a peep, B -/-/


-Seed/ escapes/ a hung/ry beak. B /-/-/-/



-All/ around -/-/


-Thrums/- noise. C-/-/


-Should/ seed try/ its brand/ new voice? C -/-/-/-/



-Twit/ter. Trick/le. -/-/-


Is it time/ -yet? --/-/


-No/, not now. -/-/


Why does this work and how can it help you?


  • Did you notice the use of onomatopoeia? This technique helps the reader hear the sounds. The reader cannot but help be 

drawn into the experience.


  • Did you notice that the first line rhymes with nothing? This sets the stage for what follows. And gives the poet freedom.


  • Did you notice the refrain? A refrain emphasizes an idea through repetition. It causes the reader to pause and reflect or creates 

anticipation.

Example: Haiku



Hi, Koo





by Jon J Muth art by Jon J Muth -Scholastic Press



Autumn,


are you dreaming


of new clothes?



these leaves


fall forever


my broom awaits.


Why does this work and how can it help you?


  • Haiku is a snap shot of a moment or experience. It embodies sensory images and emotion. 


  • Did you notice the technique of comparison? Repeated twice?


Something


Something else


Together they complete as one particular event.




Example: Spondee




SLEEP BIG BEAR SLEEP!





by Maureen Wright art by Will Hillenbrand -Marshall Cavendish Children


Old Man Wint/er from/ a storm/ cloud spied /-/-/-/-/


His big/ bear friend/ in the coun/try side. -/-/--/-/


He leaned/ to the earth/ and soft/ly sighed, -/--/-/-/


Sleep, Big Bear, Sleep.” / / / /



But Big/ Bear/ didn’t hear/ ver/y well; -/+/-/+/-/


He couldn’t/ sleep/ in his den/ in the dell. -/+/--/--/


He thought/ he heard/as twilight/ fell, -/-/--/+/


“Drive a jeep, Big Bear, drive a jeep.” --/ / /--/


Why does this work and how can it help you"


  • Did you notice how the use of the Spondee changes the pace of the poem?


  • Did you notice how it creates a normal expression into a dramatic form?


Example: Spondee




just add


GLITTER





by Angela Diterlizzi art by Smantha Cotterill -Beach Lane Books


Bored,/ ignored,/ or feel/ing down? -/-/-/-/


Need/ some fanc/y in your/ town? -/-/-/-/


Want/ some shine/ upon/ your crown? -/-/-/-/


Just add glitter! / / /


Why does this work and how can it help me?


  • Did you notice the use of the Spondee in the last line? This gives a heightened feeling. Giving an emotional experience for the

 child. 

  • Did you notice that the last line rhymes with nothing? This gives the writer greater freedom. Children love repeating the line 

with you.