Kiyoshi's Walk

By Publishers Weekly

White-haired grandfather Eto, a “wise poet,” sits at a table writing a haiku with a brush. When Kiyoshi asks him where poems come from, Eto suggests a walk. At the corner store, the sun shines while a cat knocks over a pyramid of oranges. Eto writes: “Hill of orange suns./ Cat leaps. Oranges tumble./ The cat licks his paw.” Kiyoshi’s still puzzled: “Does that mean poems come from seeing things?” But Eto doesn’t reply; instead, the two continue their journey, Eto writing haiku about experiences they have and feelings elicited. Digitally created illustrations by Wong (I’ll Be the Water) portray grandfather and grandson in careful detail and give plenty of visual information about the town they walk through and the riverside park where they sit and talk. At last, Kiyoshi writes a haiku of his own. Each poem brings Kiyoshi closer to the insight that poetry combines sensory perception and emotion—and closer to his grandfather, too. Karlins’s (Starring Lorenzo and Einstein, Too) explanation is clear and accessible, and provides a fine springboard for discussion. An author’s note further describes haiku.