A boy who turns into a TV set and a girl who eats a whale are two of the characters in a collection of humorous poetry illustrated with the author's own drawings.
By the early 1970s, the outlandish, outrageous Shel Silverstein was already a prolific folksinger/songwriter, cartoonist, and author of a widely known, much discussed classic children's book, THE GIVING TREE. His popular 1973 album, FREAKIN' AT THE FREAKERS BALL, with Dr. Hook and the Medicine Band, contained a song about Sarah Cynthia Sylvia Stout, a little girl who would appear again the following year in a book of groundbreaking kids' verses. This collection, WHERE THE SIDEWALK ENDS, forever changed the staid world of American children's poetry, which had previously clung to strict poetic forms, and socially acceptable topics. SIDEWALK turned everything upside down with an unnerving exploration and celebration of the many gross, embarrassing, and disturbing topics that fascinate kids. Enhanced by his exaggerated, whimsical B&W line drawings, Shel Silverstein's approach to accidents, bad behavior, death, childhood fears, and of course, nose-picking, is playful, filled with hilarious and often light-hearted humor. From the preposterous "Melinda Mae," in which a little girl takes 89 years to eat a whale, to the moralistic "Jimmy Jet and His TV Set," about a boy who watches so much television that he turns into one, children are showcased in all their manifold glory. Anyone who grew up in the 1970s is bound to be familiar with the infamous burial of Sarah Cynthia Sylvia Stout, who absolutely refused to take out the garbage. A complete disregard for what adults consider appropriate for children makes these poems eternally endearing.
- Poetry, Juvenile Nonfiction, Humor
- Poetry / Humorous, General, Form / Limericks + Verse
- 9-12 years
- February 1, 2004
- February 1, 2004
- Shel Silverstein