Books·Poetry Month

9 must-read Canadian works of poetry for children and young adults

Geared for younger readers, these poems are fun ways to engage in literature.

Looking for poetry books for younger readers? Check out these 9 poetry books for children and young adults.

Alligator Pie by Dennis Lee

Dennis Lee is a writer and poet. (House of Anansi Press)

Dennis Lee's timeless poetry collection Alligator Pie established his reputation as "Canada's Father Goose." Featuring clever, fun and silly verses, the work has been a bestseller since its publication in 1974. 

Boy Soup by Loris Lesynski

Loris Lesynski is the author of Boy Soup. (Annick Press)

Loris Lesynski's picture book, Boy Soup, was published in 1996. With pictures by Michael Martchenko, this fun, silly poem features a giant with a cold and a group of kids determined to not become his next meal. 

Noisy Poems for a Busy Day by Robert Heidbreder

Robert Heidbreder is a Vancouver-based author. (Kids Can Press/Ted Hayes)

This collection of short poems features lively wordplay to describe kids in action. 

Up Home by Shauntay Grant

Shauntay Grant is a writer and storyteller from Halifax. (Nimbus/

This poem from spoken-word artist and poet Shauntay Grant features a lively and lyrical look at growing up in the virbrant community of North Preston, N.S. 

Lasso the Wind by George Elliott Clarke

George Elliott Clarke is a Canadian poet and playwright. (City of Toronto/Nimbus)

This collection of children's poetry by poet and playwright George Elliott Clarke features playful and witty use of language to depict the wonder and boldness of childhood. 

The Eco-Diary of Kiran Singer by Sue Ann Alderson

Sue Anne Alderson is a Vancouver-based author. (Tradewind)

Sue Ann Alderson's environmentally-friendly poems look at celebrating life, nature and protecting the world we live in. 

Karma by Cathy Ostlere

Cathy Ostlere is a Calgary-based author. (Penguin Random House)

This young adult novel uses poetry verse to tell the story of a young girl from Manitoba who travels to India with her father after tragedy befalls her family.

Sweetest Kulu by Celina Kalluk

Celina Kalluk was born and raised in Resolute Bay, Nunavut. (Inhabit Media)

This bedtime poem by Inuit throat singer and author Celina Kalluk — with illustrations by Alexandria Neonakis — depicts a mother speaking to her child and animal imagery about our connection to the natural world.

Nokum Is My Teacher by David Bouchard

David Bouchard writes books for young people. (Red Deer Press)

Written by poet and writer David Bouchard, Nokum Is My Teacher is the story of a young Indigenous child, posing questions to his grandmother or Nokum, about the wider world beyond their home and community.