I have spoken before about the delightful Colin West and his poems – his picture books, which were a favourite with my children, still remain on my shelves and will soon be available for my new grandson, when he’s old enough.
This review is about Barmy Ballads, which is his latest book. Refreshingly at odds with most poetry books today, the poems are longer, poem stories, and all take you on a ride through completely hilarious absurdity, richly and charmingly added to with details by Colin’s trade-mark style illustrations (all in colour!).
Where else would you find a poem entitled ‘Some Stuff in a Sack’? Or a tale of ‘Granny’s Green’s’, in which granny grows enormous vegetables of all descriptions on… well, I can’t tell you where, as that would spoil the ending.
My favourite poems are ‘A Crusty Loaf of Bread’, in which Winifred’s journey round a supermarket sadly echoes my own experiences, and ‘The Story of Fergus MacPherson’, whose opinion of himself is belied by one of Colin’s brilliant illustrations.
I look forward to a bit of silliness whenever I see there is a new poem on Colin’s Twitter feed – if you want to follow him he is @mooseandmouse.
If you like poems with masterful rhymes and ridiculousness, then this is the book for you!