April is National Poetry Month and while I have been finding lots of poetry to love lately, Shel’s fanciful poems have captivated me for a very long time.
My first memories of his work are from an elementary school teacher who frequently read to us from his books. I remember loving them then. The poems were silly and fun and made us laugh. But they were sweet and full of truth, too.
I’ve bought his books many times over the years, for myself, for gifts and now for my kids. My oldest and I went through a time where we would read from one of his books every night before bed. It varied between A Light in the Attic and Where the Sidewalk Ends, but every night we would read some of his poems. I would go back to ‘Listen to the Mustn’ts’ again and again. He loved ‘Peanut Butter Sandwich’.
My kids, who are also big time Johnny Cash fans, were thrilled when they heard that Shel Silverstein wrote A Boy Named Sue. I was , too, actually. He’s just awesome. 🙂
Here are small quotes from some of my favorites:
If you are a dreamer, come in…
Listen to the Mustn’ts
“Anything can happen child, ANYTHING can be.”
“There is a voice inside of you
That whispers all day long…”
“She had blue skin
And so did he.
He kept it hid
And so did she…”
“Underneath the poet tree
Come and rest awhile with me…”
“Last night, while I lay thinking here,
Some Whatifs crawled inside my ear…”
If you haven’t read his stuff, I highly recommend all the collections, but also his book, The Giving Tree which is so lovely. You really can’t go wrong with Shel Silverstein.