I came across this book at my local library earlier this month. The book was sitting on a cabinet showcasing Dr. Seuss books for Read Across America Day which is also Dr. Seuss's birthday. I picked it up and suggested to my four-year old daughter that we should take this home since neither of us had the pleasure of diving into this story before. As a child I didn't read that many Dr. Seuss books. Only now as an adult reading to my two little girls have I found the humor and sensitivity and well insight in his method, his rhymes.
McElligots Pool starts with a man who questions a little boy named Marco who is patiently fishing in McElligots Pool. The man tells Marco that it is only a dumping hole for people's trash and that is he is wasting his time. That leads into the boys imagination opening up into a world of silly almost unimaginable fish and how this little pool might be really connected to something bigger. I think that is a great lesson. Don't we all want to think that we are going somewhere great or connected to something bigger than us? I do. My girls eyes light up as I run through the rhymes with my silly voices and inflections and as they look at the wonderful images depicting what I am reading. The pages illustrated with silly and fascinating images. As we take a ride with Marco and his imagination he sets sail for the ocean and all the small and large and the impossibly big creatures he can create. My two-year old daughter always grins as we read "Or even a fish Made of strawberry jelly." One of our favorite pictures is a fancy fish, almost like a beautiful Japanese painting. Marco never stops imagining that any of this "might" happen and so Marco ends his tale with the hope that by sitting patiently he will come up with a catch of his own!