What do four little girls discover when they spend an afternoon by the sea? Maggie, a shell; Milly, a star; Molly, a “horrible thing;” and May, a smooth round stone. This seemingly simple story by American poet Edward Estlin Cummings (1894–1962), showcasing his signature quirky style, is delightful as well as profound. Readers will enjoy the day at the beach for its innate pleasures, but on contemplation may realize that objects encountered by the girls reflect parts of themselves.
Marcia Perry’s bright, engaging illustrations enhance the poem with her playful and introspective portraits of the characters; her beach setting sings with the ocean tide and the seagulls’ squawks.
About the AUTHOR
E. E. Cummings (American, 1894–1962) was a revered modernist poet and novelist known for his spare, evocative language and innovations in linguistic style and poetic form. Cummings was awarded an Academy of American Poets Fellowship, two Guggenheim Fellowships, and the Bollingen Prize.
About the ARTIST
Marcia Perry’s art has been featured in galleries, licensed products, and books. She founded and directs Youth Arts Collective, an afterschool arts studio and mentoring program for young artists in Monterey, California.