A big trend in recent years is to tell the true story of real people in history through the vehicle of poetry. The following books are based on the life stories of famous people as well as not-so-well known individuals—both fascinating sources for poetry for young people.
The list begins:
Bernier-Grand, Carmen T. 2007. Frida: ¡Viva la vida! Long Live Life! New York: Marshall Cavendish.
Engle, Margarita. 2010. The Firefly Letters; A Suffragette's Journey to Cuba. New York: Henry Holt.
Giovanni, Nikki. 2005. Rosa. New York: Henry Holt.
Gollub, Matthew. 1998. Cool Melons Turn to Frogs: The Life and Poems of Issa. New York: Lee & Low.
Hemphill, Stephanie. 2007. Your Own, Sylvia. New York: Knopf.
Hopkins, Lee Bennett. 1999. Lives: Poems about Famous Americans. New York: HarperCollins.
For more details, get your copy of The Poetry Teacher’s Book of Lists.
And if you already have the book and would like to offer additions, corrections, or other input, please do so in the COMMENTS area. Thanks!