My review of For Everyone by Jason Reynolds will follow the publisher’s blurb :
Originally performed at the Kennedy Center for the unveiling of the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial, and later as a tribute to Walter Dean Myers, this stirring and inspirational poem is New York Times bestselling author and National Book Award finalist Jason Reynolds’s rallying cry to the dreamers of the world.
For Every One is just that: for every one. For every one person. For every one dream. But especially for every one kid. The kids who dream of being better than they are. Kids who dream of doing more than they almost dare to dream. Kids who are like Jason Reynolds, a self-professed dreamer. Jason does not claim to know how to make dreams come true; he has, in fact, been fighting on the front line of his own battle to make his own dreams a reality. He expected to make it when he was sixteen. Then eighteen. Then twenty-five. Now, some of those expectations have been realized. But others, the most important ones, lay ahead, and a lot of them involve kids, how to inspire them. All the kids who are scared to dream, or don’t know how to dream, or don’t dare to dream because they’ve NEVER seen a dream come true. Jason wants kids to know that dreams take time. They involve countless struggles. But no matter how many times a dreamer gets beat down, the drive and the passion and the hope never fully extinguish—because just having the dream is the start you need, or you won’t get anywhere anyway, and that is when you have to take a leap of faith.
A pitch perfect graduation, baby, or love my kid gift.
April is poetry month here in Canada and I’m going to share a powerful work by Jason Reynolds that is profound and honest. It’s a beautiful letter written for … For Everyone !
I’ve read and re-read this work many times before this blog post. It’s a book I keep handy when things get a little dark and I question my own dreams. It’s a letter for me, for you, for your children or grandchildren. I’ll often open it up to a random page and connect with the words of hope. There are books like that that I cherish, they hold a very special place on my shelves. This is one of those books. For Everyone keeps reminding me to continue to feed my own dreams.
I suggest a listen to the audio clip on the Simon & Schuster page. There is nothing quite like listening to poetry by the author themselves. This was my first read of anything by Jason Reynolds but I’ll be picking up more of his work. If this little powerhouse of a book is any indication of the awesomeness that is Jason Reynolds, I want to read it all.
If you are looking to buy a gift for someone who is graduating high school or college, this is without a doubt the book to give.
If you want to know more about the Canadian National Poetry month, then head on over to The League of Canadian Poets and help them celebrate 20 years bringing poetry into the spotlight every April.
For Everyone by Jason Reynolds, available now
Atheneum/Caitlyn Dlouhy Books an imprint of Simon & Schuster
*** A galley of For Everyone was provided by the publisher in exchange for my thoughts and honest review.
P.S. Although I know this isn’t a Canadian poet, it is still such an impactful and amazing work that needs to be shared.