Here is a selection of verses by Michio Mado, chosen and translated by the Empress Michiko of Japan. Winner of the 1994 Hans Christian Andersen Author Award, Mado is the much-loved author of poems and songs for children in Japan. The Empress introduced his work to the world outside of Japan in "The Animals: Selected Poems," an earlier book. Her translations, like the originals, are playful and childlike in their imagery. For example: "Fingers Fingers Fingers Fingers, All in a row. No quarrels. Nails Nails Nails, Fingers' faces. Sweet!" The poems are given in the original Japanese, facing their translations in English. For each poem, the internationally known Japanese artist Mitsumasa Anno, winner of the 1984 Hans Christian Andersen Award for Illustration, has made enchanting pictures that catch the full flavor of the verses. A companion to their earlier collaboration, "The Animals," this is a very special book for children of many cultures in the United States.
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