The Short Tree and the Bird That Could Not Sing


32 pages
ISBN 0-88899-120-7
DDC jC813'.54






Illustrations by John Bianchi
Reviewed by Jean Free

Jean Free, a library consultant, was an elementary-school teacher and
librarian in Whitby, Ontario.


The short tree and the purple bird are two misfits who become friends
and enjoy a happy summer. When the bird must migrate, he is sadly missed
by the tree who has “roots and . . . [is] stuck in the ground.” But
the bird returns to a joyful reunion, bringing his old friend a shred of
pink beach ball as a ribbon for her leaves.

The Short Tree is a charming primary picture book filled with
delightful humor, kindness, and the joy of friendship. Playwright Dennis
Foon won a cbc literary competition prize for this story, and John
Bianchi, the distinguished illustrator of the Dingles series, brings his
insight and wit to the text.

This would be an excellent choice for primary students for discussion
of social behavior, acceptance of differences, and the meaning of


Foon, Dennis., “The Short Tree and the Bird That Could Not Sing,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed April 15, 2024,