Silverstein, Shel. A Light in the Attic. New York, N.Y.: Harper & Row, 1981. Print. All of the poems on this page were selected from the book A Light in the Attic.
Somebody Has To Somebody has to go polish the stars, They’re looking a little bit dull. Somebody has to go polish the stars, For the eagles and starlings and gulls Have all been complaining they’re tarnished and worn, They say they want new ones we cannot afford. So please get your rags and your polishing jars, Somebody has to go polish the stars.
Signals When the light is green you go. When the light is red you stop. But what do you do When the light is blue With orange and lavender spots?
What Did? What did the carrot say to the wheat? ” ‘Lettuce’ rest, I’m feeling ‘beet.’ “ What did the paper say to the pen? “I feel quite all ‘write,’ my friend.” What did the teapot say to the chalk? Nothing, you silly . . . teapots can’t talk!
Something Missing I remember I put on my socks, I remember I put on my shoes. I remember I put on my tie that was printed, In beautiful purples and blues. I remember I put on my coat, To look perfectly grand at the dance, Yet I feel there is something I may have forgot-- What is it? What is it?
Monsters I've Met I met a ghost, but he didn’t want my head, He only wanted to know the way to Denver. I met a devil, but he didn’t want my soul, He only wanted to borrow my bike awhile. I met a vampire, but he didn’t want my blood, He only wanted two nickles for a dime. I keep meeting all the right people-- At all the wrong times.
Put Something In Draw a crazy picture, Write a nutty poem, Sing a mumble-gumble song, Whistle through your comb. Do a loony-goony dance ‘Cross the kitchen floor, Put something silly in the world That ain’t been there before.
Stop Thief! Policemen, policemen, Help me please. Someone went and stole my knees. I’d chase him down, but I suspect My feet and legs just won’t connect.
How Many? How Much? How many slams in an old screen door? Depends how loud you shut it. How many slices in a bread? Depends how thin you cut it. How much good inside a day? Depends how good you live ‘em. How much love inside a friend? Depends how much you give ‘em
Hammock Grandma sent the hammock, The good Lord sent the breeze. I’m here to do the swinging-- Now, who’s gonna move the trees?
Moon-Catchin' Net I’ve made me a moon-catchin’ net, And I’m goin’ huntin’ tonight, I’ll run along swingin’ it over my head, And grab for that big ball of light. So tomorrow just look at the sky, And if there’s no moon you can bet I’ve found, What I sought and i finally caught, The moon in my moon-catchin’ net. But if the moon’s still shinin’ there, Look close underneath and you’ll get, A clear look at me in the sky swingin’ free, With a star in my moon-catchin’ net.