Friday, August 19, 2011

The Little Island

Margaret Wise Brown 1946
illustrated by Leonard Weisgard
Soon we leave for the Thousand Islands in upstate NY.  It's one of our favorite places and also where my dad's side of the family is.  So we'll get to see our country cousins and boat and swim.

There really are over 1000 islands in that stretch of the river and the whole area is very beautiful.  Chris and I always come home dreaming and scheming how we can afford to buy a house on an island up there (we can't!).  Some islands are quite big (even with a road or two), but most are smaller with only one or two houses on them and are accessible only by boat.  And I've seen plenty like the island in this book, with only enough room for a few trees and shrubs.

This little island is in the ocean (I always imagine someplace in the Pacific along the coast of California or Oregon).  It's a character all it's own in this story- a home for seals, and gulls, and even a visit from a kitten.  Nothing exciting happens, but it's a sweet story to read and the illustrations, like paintings, have won a Caldecott. 

Night came to the little Island
dark and still
And seven little fireflies
flashed in the darkness.
A bat flew around and around the pear tree
and woke up the owl.
The wind whistled.

If anyone is wondering about the author's name- Golden MacDonald was the pen name for Margaret Wise Brown of Goodnight Moon fame.

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