Disney Publishing Worldwide Releases Today Poems to Learn by Heart by Caroline Kennedy, with Paintings by Jon J Muth

Tue Mar 26, 2013 5:59am EDT

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Companion to #1 New York Times Best Seller A Family of Poems Available for
National Poetry Month

Poems to Learn by Heart Publication Date is March 26, 2013 

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NEW YORK--(Business Wire)--
Disney-Hyperion, an imprint of Disney Publishing Worldwide (DPW), releases today
Poems to Learn by Heart by Caroline Kennedy, with paintings by Caldecott
Honor-winning artist Jon J Muth, with a first printing of 250,000 copies. Poems
to Learn by Heart is a companion to Kennedy`s New York Times #1 best seller A
Family of Poems. For this new collection, she has selected more than a hundred
diverse poems that speak across the ages: to the young and young at heart, to
readers new to poetry, and to devoted fans. Coinciding with the resurging
interest in spoken word, open mics, poetry slams, and recitation contests across
the country, Poems to Learn by Heart provides a trove of works to return to
again and again.

Caroline Kennedy (Photo: Business Wire)

In this rich anthology, Kennedy presents poems that she loved as a child,
discovered more recently, or were shared with her by family and friends. Divided
into ten sections focusing on subjects such as nature, sports, monsters and
fairies, war and school, friendship and family, her choices reflect both classic
poets and new voices, little-known gems and standards that still stir today`s
new readers, like the young students at DreamYard, a school and arts program she
works with and admires. In a tribute to those young artists who have in turn
inspired her, their poem "Voices Rising" is included in the section called "I`m
Expecting You!" in a four-page spread. 

"Poetry announces us," Caroline Kennedy writes in one of her chapter
introductions. "It is the most personal and direct expression of who we are and
how we are feeling. In a world where it sometimes seems that no one is
listening, poetry can help us find our own voice and be heard. Growing up is
hard, but poems can protect, guide, and connect us to others. If we learn them
by heart, the emotion, the wisdom, and the power they contain can bring joy to
our lives and sustain us through difficult times." 

Kennedy`s chapter introductions offer a rich mix of insight and wit. She shares
memories of her own growing up, with smart observations about the poetry she`s
chosen and the history that infuses some of the pieces (including President
Lincoln`s Gettysburg Address). She weaves in stories on Seneca`s technique for
remembering his students` names, the lovely image of a memory-palace and where
that idea came from, as well as reflections on how one poem addresses the
elements of a meaningful life, and how another, when memorized, helped her son
keep nature close at hand while confined to a classroom. In an intimate and
conversational tone, Kennedy illuminates why poetry about elves and other
magical creatures has much to teach us about imagining other worlds, and how
nonsensical poems not only make us laugh but also take on more serious work of
language and artistry. At the end she includes an extra-credit section of poems
that, in their complexity and length, present the challenge of memorization

In support of the release of Poems to Learn by Heart, Kennedy will embark on an
eight-city U.S. tour with events at bookstores and libraries. She will also
serve as the honorary chair of National Library Week, which takes place April
14-20, 2013. A Common Core teachers guide for Poems to Learn by Heart is
available at Disney.com/PoemsbyHeart. 

Caroline Kennedy is an attorney and the author/editor of ten New York Times
best-selling books on constitutional law, American history, politics, and
poetry. She is President of the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation and Chair of
the Senior Advisory Committee of the Institute of Politics at Harvard
University. A graduate of Harvard and Columbia Law School, she also serves on
the board of directors of New Visions for Public Schools and is Honorary Chair
of the American Ballet Theater. From 2002-2011, she was Vice Chair of the Fund
for Public Schools, which has raised over $300 million to support public school
reform and engaged a record number of New Yorkers to volunteer in New York City

Jon J Muth is the author and illustrator of numerous inspiring and award-winning
books for children, including the Caldecott Honor Book Zen Shorts. He also
collaborated with Caroline Kennedy on the New York Times best seller A Family of
Poems, the companion to Poems to Learn by Heart. Born in Ohio, he now lives with
his family in New York State. 

About Disney Publishing Worldwide

Disney Publishing Worldwide (DPW) is the world`s largest publisher of children`s
books and magazines with over 700 million products sold each year. DPW consists
of an extensive worldwide licensing structure as well as vertically integrated
publishing imprints, including Disney Book Group in the U.S., Disney Libri in
Italy, and Disney Libros in Spain. DPW publishes a range of children`s magazines
globally, as well as Disney kids magazines in the U.S. Disney English is DPW`s
English language learning business, which includes Disney English learning
centers in China and a worldwide retail-licensing program. DPW`s digital
products include bestselling eBook titles as well as original apps.
Headquartered in Glendale, California, DPW publishes books, magazines, and
digital products in 85 countries in 75 languages. For more information visit

Poems to Learn by Heart
By Caroline Kennedy, with paintings by Jon J Muth
Publication Date: March 26, 2013
ISBN: 9781423108054 • Price: $19.99 • All Ages

Photos/Multimedia Gallery Available:

Disney Publishing Worldwide
Jennifer Corcoran, 347-302-3499
SallyAnne McCartin, 860-435-6464

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