Mother's Heart, a Daughter's Love

written by 
Joyce Carol Thomas

Joanna Cotler, 2001
ISBN 0-0602-9649-6

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With twenty-five eloquent poems written in two voicesdaughter's and mother'sthat speak alone, speak in unison, and even harmonize on the page, National Book Award winner Joyce Carol Thomas celebrates the moments in life that form the unique bond between every mother and daughter from birth to girlhood and into adulthood.

A Mother's Heart, A Daughter's Love: Poems for Us to Share is a gift to read aloud, to cherish, and to share from generation to generation.

Daughter's Voice:

What I love about you
Mama, is this:
The smell of your hair
After coconut shampoo
The nape of your neck
Where I nestle my nose
Your fragrant pillow
Your scented clothes

Mother's Voice:

And what I love about you
Sweetie, is this:
Herbal tea stepped in cozy
Brisk walks up a
Windy hill
Meditation in the silent
Delight that laughs away
The chill

School Library Journal:

A nostalgic collection of 25 poems written in the voices of a daughter and her mother, exposing the changing timbre of their relationship throughout the girl's life and the breadth of their feelings for and about one another. In the first verses, the newborn waits, blanket-swathed in the nursery, for the one who will claim her; in the final poems the grown daughter grieves for her deceased mother.... Voices resonate separately, back and forth, in a call and response."

Susan Scheps, Shaker Heights Public Library, OH

Publishers Weekly:

Meant to be read by a mother and daughter, Joyce Carol Thomas's A Mother's Heart, A Daughter's Love: Poems for Us to Share divides the 25 poems with the daughter's voice on the left and the mother's voice on the right. They capture moments such as a christening, a revolt against bathtime, the first day of kindergarten and a caution against growing up too fast ("Up All Night").

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