Saturday, October 06, 2007


My View:

Puff, The Magic Dragon
By: Peter Yarrow and Lenny Lipton

with paintings by Eric Puybaret

A touching classic folk song/poem becomes a beautifully illustrated childrens book that includes a 4 song CD in the back featuring Peter Yarrow, his daughter Bethany and cellist, Rufus Cappadocia.

For several generations, now, many children have grown up singing this wonderful song brought into the world by Peter Yarrow along with his friends, Paul and Mary. I first heard the song when I was four, played on a 45 record. Peter, Paul and Mary, the well-loved folk group have performed this song many times over the decades and even with all the silly controversy about the song's, 'real' meaning, its magic has charmed millions of children, parents and now grandparents along the way.

What's even more magical is getting the opportunity to meet Peter Yarrow. I brought my copy of this beautiful book to Powell's in Portland to have it signed and although I expected a crowd, I didn't expect it to be a concert! Peter Yarrow performed at least dozen well-known folk songs, got everyone in the audience to sing along including his son, Christopher, and then invited all the children up on the stage and passed the 'mike' for their own solo in the chorus of "Puff, the magic dragon."

Part concert, peace rally, family gathering and book signing, it made my week. I felt uplifted, loved, hopeful and safe. And he was so sweet to my daughter, I wished I could have said then, what I'm saying now but I was a bit overwhelmed. So here it is: "Peter, you're music is still warm and wonderful, humorous and loveable, just as you are yourself. Thank you so much for sharing it with me. I had't had a very good day until then. You changed it all. Thank you again."

Puff, the Magic Dragon and Peter Yarrow. Still magical after all these years!

Portlanders note: You can catch Peter Yarrow at 2pm tomorrow at The monkey and the rat (his son's cool import art store in Old Town).


Susan J Tweit said...

Hi, Susan,

You had me humming Puff the Magic Dragon! It's wonderful to know that Peter Yarrow is still doing what he does best: singing, teaching, and inspiring us all - no matter what age. Thanks for the reminder!

Susan J. Tweit

Susan GT said...

I'm so glad I had you humming that happy tune...I couldn't wait to share the book and song with my elementary mask makers...they loved it too!