Cutlass held high above his head, tangled beard shining black as the deepest night, the Pirate King struck fear into the heart of any sailor fool enough to venture out onto the high seas. This daring buccaneer may have been born with the name Edward Teach, but the swashbuckling terror would forever be known as Blackbeard. “Tall as a waterfall” and “strong as a rum-soaked cask”, Blackbeard lives on in countless tales of seafaring exploits.
In compelling poetry, the spirits of Frederick Douglas, John Brown, and William Tecumseh Sherman come alive. So does the heart-rending tale of a Confederate son and Union father, the desperate struggle of boys fighting like men, the horrifying shrieks of the wounded, and the pitiful plight of a toil-weary slave. One poetic letter finds distraught parents aching for a son who hasn’t been heard from in months. Another spotlights a wounded lad languishing in a POW camp, determined to survive his living nightmare.
In moving verse, Children's Poet Laureate J. Patrick Lewis gives new voice to seventeen heroes of civil rights. This commanding collection of poems invites the listener to hear in each verse the thunder that lies in every voice, no matter how small. Featuring civil rights luminaries Coretta Scott King, Harvey Milk, Mohandas Gandhi, Nelson Mandela, Sylvia Mendez, Aung San Suu Kyi, Mamie Carthan Till, Helen Zia, Josh Gibson, Dennis James Banks, Mitsuye Endo, Ellison Onizuka, Jackie Robinson, Muhammad Yunus, James Chaney, Andrew Goodman, and Michael Schwerner.