Cover image for I am phoenix : poems for two voices
I am phoenix : poems for two voices
Fleischman, Paul.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : HarperTrophy, 1998.

Physical Description:
51 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
A collection of poems about birds to be read aloud by two voices.
General Note:
"A Charlotte Zolotow book."
Reading Level:
NP Lexile.
Program Information:
Reading Counts RC 3-5 5.5 3 Quiz: 20001.
Added Author:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PS3556.L42268 I2 1985C Juvenile Non-Fiction Open Shelf

On Order



At first light the finches
are flitting about the trees

purple finches
painted finches

In this companion volume to Joyful Noise: Poems for Two Voices, the winner of the 1989 Newbery Medal, Paul Fleischman celebrates the sound, the sense, the essence of birds. Written to be spoken aloud by two voices, sometimes alternating, sometimes simultaneous, these poems perfectly capture the beauty of birds in their singing, soaring, and rejoicing.

Author Notes

Paul Fleischman was born in Monterey, California on September 5, 1952. His father is fellow children's author, Sid Fleischman. He attended the University of California at Berkeley for two years, from 1970 to 1972. He dropped out to go on a cross-country train/bicycle trip and along the way took care of a 200-year-old house in New Hampshire. He eventually earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree from the University of New Mexico in 1977.

Fleischman has written over 25 books for children and young adults including award winners such as Joyful Noise: Poems for Two Voices, Newberry Medal in 1989; Graven Images, Newberry Honor; Bull Run, Scott O'Dell Award for Historical Fiction; Breakout, Finalist for the National Book Award in 2003; Saturnalia, Boston Globe-Horn Book Fiction Honor. He has also garnered numerous awards and recognitions from the American Library Association, School Library Journal, Publisher's Weekly, Booklist, and NCTE.

He founded the grammar watchdog groups ColonWatch and The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to English.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 2

Publisher's Weekly Review

During a short career, Fleischman has received rave reviews and awards for his distinctive stories, radically different from each other. Here the author gives way to the poet, his alter ego, composing works that are arranged as duets but can also be relished by one alone, reading or reciting the lines as paeans to birds of various feathers. From dawn to dusk, Fleishchman keeps his ears attuned to the music and messages in the calling of finches, wax wings, condors, sparrows, the passenger pigeon (lamenting over its kin, murdered by the millions), finally the owl who owns the night. The doves of Dodono in Greece sing about people who beseech the goddess for answers; the wandering albatross thinks about shipwrecks, mariners swept into the ocean beneath the bird's wings. There are many other wonders to experience in the echoic, inspiring poetry. Nutt's splendid drawings complement and enhance the words in a singular book. (All ages) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

School Library Journal Review

Gr 4 Up Fifteen poems covering the space of a day and the birds active during that day are designed to be read aloud by two voices. Each poem is accompanied by a handsome black-and-white drawing. The collection fails to offer any new insights and degenerates to the merely silly, especially if the attempt is made to read it aloud. The viewpoints expressed and the imagery used (``Doves of Dodona'' or ``The Common Egret'') will mean nothing to most children. Wonderful, accessible poems about birds already exist. Why bother to clutter up the skies with ``Warblers'' (``Warblers warbling /Warblers warbling'') when Edward Thomas' ``Sedgewarblers'' exists? The poem ``Owls'' (``Sun's down, /Sky's dark,'') cannot evoke the mood of Randall Jarrell's poem ``The Bird of Night.'' In this year of Audubon's anniversary, honor the beauty of birds with poetry worthy of thempoems found in collections like Cole's The Birds and the Beasts Were There (Collins, 1963; o.p.) or MacKay's A Flock of Words (HBJ, 1970; o.p.). Kathleen D.u Whalin, New Canaan Library, Conn. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.