View Full Version : Rate-a-Poem: Mr. Grumpledump's Song

William Haskins
03-20-2006, 09:01 PM
By Shel Silverstein (http://shelsilverstein.com/indexSite.html)
(1930 - 1999)

Everything's wrong,
Days are too long,
Sunshine's too hot,
Wind is too strong.
Clouds are too fluffy,
Grass is too green,
Ground is too dusty,
Sheets are too clean.
Stars are too twinkly,
Moon is too high,
Water's too drippy,
Sand is too dry.
Rocks are too heavy,
Feathers too light,
Kids are too noisy,
Shoes are too tight.
Folks are too happy,
Singin' their songs.
Why can't they see it?
Everything's wrong!

03-20-2006, 09:05 PM
I am a huge Shel Silverstein fan, so this was a great way to start the day.

03-20-2006, 09:36 PM
Me, too, (though there are other poems of his I prefer). Thanks for a 'light' start to the day, William. Nothing deep to scratch for here, but enjoyable still.

03-20-2006, 09:40 PM
I've always thought Shel Silverstein a bit overrated. (I know, I know heresy.) But he does always give a smile, worth stars for that alone.

03-20-2006, 11:18 PM
Ha! It works for me.

03-20-2006, 11:58 PM
Rhyming is strong
Where everything's wrong.
Verse, though too trite,
Is undeniably bright
Yet words do not speak
Like bird song from beak.
For grass is not green
Rather brown it would seem,
And shoes that seem tight
Make steps look so light.
Yes, strong the winds blow
But it helps flowers grow.
And rocks that would fall
Don't seem heavy at all.
Sun does not shine
Where rain drips from sky,
And just how do you glean
That sheets are too clean?

So in reader's hindsight
What is wrong, is all right

ETA: I absolutely love Shel Silverstein. He is one of the first poets that I read. This just is not one of his better poems. I agree with poetinahat, having the word too in every line throws it off for me. It doesn't flow or speak to me the way most of his work does. I gave it a 4.

03-21-2006, 12:23 AM
For me he is a "rolling rock gathering" and from the child's world speaks the adult's voice. For me, it's healthy to recognize that we, as adult's really do live in a tension between sacred/profane, good/evil, innocense/depravity and to keep a healthy balance, it's good to express your child as an adult or your adult as a child.

03-21-2006, 01:37 AM
Part of the appeal of S.S. is his artwork that accompanies the poems, although this is one that is just as good without.

Funny, I just read this one to my son at bedtime this past week. I read a story, then four or five of S. S.'s poems each night.

Forbidden Snowflake
03-21-2006, 02:13 AM
I like it, it made me smile. But I do not consider it a masterpiece, the rhythm doesn't always work for me. But everything that makes me smile is somehow good!

03-21-2006, 03:16 AM
Heheheh. Grumpledump.

A-****ing-plus :)

03-21-2006, 03:41 AM
It's funny, but I'd prefer if it were less monotonous in structure.

I'd like some breaks, and a differently structured line, say every one in four.

Seeing the column of "too" and all the commas, my eye just wants to skip to the end.


03-21-2006, 08:52 AM
It's funny, but I'd prefer if it were less monotonous in structure.

I'd like some breaks, and a differently structured line, say every one in four.

Seeing the column of "too" and all the commas, my eye just wants to skip to the end.


I'm with you on this. I generally like SS, but this isn't one of his better pieces, a little overly monotonous and more pedestrian than usual.

Everyone has off days, I think this was one of Shel's.

03-21-2006, 10:13 AM
This is OK but it's far from one of Shel's best.

On the other hand, I have to say I was disappointed but not extremely surprised at Perks's assessment of his talents. Too many were and are unaware of the depth and scope of what he actually achieved.

Shel Silverstein was one of the most versatile and talented humorists and songwriters of All time. From 400 Children's books, which are still read and cherished by generations of children to over 800 Songs, Includng "The Unicorn Song" by the Irish Rovers, "Cover Of Rolling Stone" by Doctor Hook and the Medicine Company, and A Boy Named Sue by Johhny Cash,

The funny thing is that, for all his success in so many fields,
(including Cartooning for Playboy and writing scores for several Movies, in addition to all the above), few recognize his name or realize the many ways in which he has entertained them over the years.

If anything, he was one of a kind, and vastly underrated


03-21-2006, 04:10 PM
I'll be sure to leave my personal preference at the threshhold of the next thread.

03-21-2006, 04:17 PM
I'll be sure to leave my personal preference at the threshhold of the next thread.

JRH, try not to belittle people for having opinions, okay?

That may not be what you did, but your post can be read that way quite easily.

03-21-2006, 04:49 PM
I wasn't belittling Perks or anyone, I was merely expressing a difference of opinion and stating why.

If it was taken negatively, I apologise.

If my writing could begin to approach the level or success of Mr. Silverstein's, I'd be a happy man.


03-21-2006, 05:01 PM
For clarification, I like the work of Shel Silverstein. He just doesn't rock my world as soundly as he seems to others. Perhaps I was born with, as I always suspected, a damaged funny bone. His estate has some of my money, anyway.

Not to flog a point, but it does come off condescending that a primer on his CV should straighten me right out. His prolificacy and diversity don't make me smile any wider or chuckle any heartier. And I don't know how else to read that you were disappointed, but not all that surprised, by my opinion.

This is a subjective medium. With a modicum of mulling, even my poor credentials should suffice to float an inclination to or away from something, worthy as it may be.

03-21-2006, 05:10 PM

You arn't the only one for whom he has had limited appeal or even recognition of his achieivements and I was simply trying to defend Mr. Silverstein.

I didn't mean it as an attack. I only mentioned your name because you brought up the concept of his being overrated, and, in general, I don't think he has been.


03-21-2006, 05:37 PM
Then it's best to leave out the name. The post said you were disappointed at *Perks'* assessment, not assessments in general.

And, for Pete's sake, she said she likes the guy's work, but maybe not as much as some others. Is that not enough?

And to try to set the world straight in the context of a poem even you say is far from his best seems like an ambush.

You mentioned several songs I'd had no idea he'd written -- and I like them all.

Soooo anyway, back to rate-a-poem...