Leaves, cool and green in summer-time, riotously colorful in fall, are the stuff of which nostalgia is made. But in the imaginative hands of Artist Tomi Ungerer they become an inspiration for these delightfully whimsical leaf-and-line fantasies. Where, indeed, could an elephant find a more becoming head than in a ginkgo tree?
Alsatian-born, Ungerer wandered the world before settling in New York a year ago. He has since written and illustrated four children's books and combed Central Park for the leaves shown here. The verses were dreamed in Rockefeller Plaza by SPORTS ILLUSTRATED writers who look down on 18 leafy sycamore and plane trees.
Hackberry fish with botanical notions Find arborvitae in the deep blue oceans.
Hirsute with birch leaves on the wall, This austere man will bald come fall.
August 10, 1958
A fern supplies a hapless fish With verdant vertebrae on a dish.
Ginkgo leaves as skating skirts Serve admirably for these two flirts.
A ginkgo too for elephants' snoots Is just the thing for tootling toots.
A finicky bird with a magnolia beezer Finds locust-leaf bug a gourmet's pleaser.
The donkey's ears are honey locust A fetching bit of hocus-pocust.
This bug's back is made of elm, Unique, indeed, in the insect realm.
The cross-eyed pooch has a maple face, and grass makes a tail for him to chase.
A plane tree furnishes Adam's scanties, A modern twist on fig-leaf panties.
A bonanza strike with a maple gusher! The drillers' future looks much plusher.
A plane tree here lends comb to rooster, Though not the sort of one he's useter.