Carry on: Poetry by Young Immigrants was a book I found on a site the store I work at uses for ordering. It might have been just a sample of the poetry, not the completed version, but either way, this book illustrated by Roge Girard is something worth looking into.
Told from the point of view of young immigrants, each poem is a snapshot of thoughts, feelings, hopes, dreams, fears, and observations. We see how cold is experienced for the first time. How the thought of not having friends near you is explored. And even the experience of the thought am I “X” or and I “Y”? (Are you you if you no longer live in Iran, Moldovia, Venezuela).
Inspired by the work Simon Boulerice had done in their high school workshops, this book came about to explode into a documentary and more. The publisher description says, “written by young newcomers to Canada.” But of course, this could be any place someone from “there” could feel coming “here.”
Girard’s illustrations are the images of many of the actual voices of the book and sometimes they are paired with their own poem, but more often accompanying another person’s work. These simple, but perfectly detailed portraits, are in sepia colors (at least via my copy) and set the tone of each poem. Mostly, each work is fairly short, a snapshot of sorts, and compliments the art. Some of the other books I could find of Girard’s looks like he is gone more realistic than his more whimsical style. Yet, there does seem to be some more adult focused books that continue in this collection.
This book could be all ages, but the younger reader/listener probably would not appreciate the subject as much as an older reader. It would work well in a classroom about immigration, history and current events, and of course, poetry.
As a sidenote, I did take some of the non-watermarked images/poems as well as some watermarked to highlight some favorite poems of mine, or poems that I felt should be highlighted. Therefore, my apologizes for any discomfort they might have, and if this is not allowed, please let me know!