In honor of National Poetry Month, I offer you a poem by one of the only poets I’ve ever truly loved.  I got different messages out of Uncle Shelby when I was a kid (also consider that the Rogers library of Silverstein books included Uncle Shelby’s ABZ Book), but the slyly pointed writing still rings true when I read these to the kids in my life today.  Go buy yourself a copy of Where the Sidewalk Ends, or A Light in the Attic, or, if you’re a sap like me, The Giving Tree.  And don’t forget to listen.

Listen to the Mustn’ts

Shel Silverstein

Listen to the MUSTN’TS, child,
Listen to the DON’TS
Listen to the SHOULDN’TS
Listen to the NEVER HAVES
Then listen close to me-
Anything can happen, child,
ANYTHING can be.

From Where the Sidewalk Ends
Copyright © 1974 by Evil Eye Music, Inc.

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