Shel Silverstein Quotes

The challenge is not to smile when reading Shel Silverstein Quotes. Having grown-up keeping Where the Sidewalk Ends and The Giving Tree within arms reach on my bookshelf, I am especially excited to share these quotes and excerpts with you.

Below you will find we have split Mr. Silverstein's quotes into two categories: 1 from his Works and 1 from his Interviews.

From his Works – Shel Silverstein Quotes

If the track is tough and the hill is rough, THINKING you can just ain't enough!
-The Little Blue Engine Excerpt, Where the Sidewalk Ends-

I will not play tug o' war.
I'd rather play hug o' war,
Where everyone hugs
Instead of tugs,
-Hug O' War Excerpt, Where the Sidewalk Ends-

I know a way to stay friends forever, There's really nothing to it, I tell you what to do, And you do it.
-Friendship Excerpt, A Light in the Attic-

All those Woulda-Coulda-Shouldas
All ran away and hid
From one little did.
-Woulda-Coulda-Shoulds Excerpt, Falling Up-

Listen to the Shouldn'ts
the Impossibles, the Won'ts
Listen to the Never Haves
Then listen close to me--
Anything can happen, child,
Anything can be.
-Listen to the Mustn'ts Excerpt, Where the Sidewalk Ends-

I have been to The Land of Happy -
What a bore!
-Land of Happy Excerpt, Where the Sidewalk Ends-

From 1963 Aardvark Magazine Interview -
Shel Silverstein Quotes

I believe that if you don't want to do anything, then sit there and don't do it, but don't expect people to hand you a corn beef sandwich and wash your socks for you and unzip your fly for you.

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He has the obligation to society that any human being has. I don't think a satirist has any greater obligation to society than a bricklayer or anybody else.

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I myself do not believe in explaining anything.

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It’s easy to sell a bag of popcorn to somebody who wants popcorn. If they want popcorn and you want to sell them shish kebab, you’ve got a tougher time of it. If you want to educate them, go ahead and educate them. Sell them shish kebab. Or sell them raw fish or whatever you sell them, but don’t complain because they wanted popcorn.

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If you want to find out what a writer or a cartoonist really feels, look at his work. That's enough.

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If you're behind the times, they won't notice you. If you're right in tune with them, you're no better than they are, so they won't care much for you. Be just a little ahead of them.

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Never explain what you do. It speaks for itself. You only muddle it by talking about it.

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To me, freedom entitles you to do something, not to not do something.

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You'd better get your laugh while you're making your point, or you won't be doing it very long.

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The question is, if your work is weak and lacking so that it needs explanation, it isn't enough, it isn't clear enough.

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I know we've only just touched on the wit and wisdom of Uncle Shelby, but alas we have reached the end of our Shel Silverstein quotes page.

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