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The Boy Who Didn't Believe in Spring, Tupac and Ernie Barnes

I just read a nice book with my daughters called The Boy Who Didn't Believe in Spring by Lucille Clifton.  The story was written in the 1970's and you can tell by the language and art style.


The book has a Lexile level of 510L and an ATOS level of 3.3.  The story follows King Shabazz and his friend as they walk around their neighborhood skeptically looking for Spring.

Spoiler Alert: Towards the end of the story the two boys find a small path of flowers that are growing pushing their way through a pile of junk. 
The image reminded me of the poem "The Rose That Grew From Concrete" by Tupad Shakur:

Did you hear about the rose that grew
from a crack in the concrete?
Proving nature's law is wrong it
learned to walk with out having feet.
Funny it seems, but by keeping it's dreams,
it learned to breathe fresh air.
Long live the rose that grew from concrete
when no one else ever cared. 

In both pieces of literature one find a glimpse of hope, a portion of nature in the most unlikely environment. 

I also want to share this painting by Ernie Barnes that shares a similar theme.

We read through the story today, tomorrow we will discuss the multiple meanings. 

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