This is my daughter (Jessica’s) favorite poem by Shel Silverstein. I cannot count the number of times we read Where the Sidewalk Ends as she was growing up.
As I was readying to take a shot of the book nestled among jasmine a caterpillar dropped from the sky and pooped! Can you believe it? Hmph! What does he know about poetry?! Gee-sh… and I had just scraped twenty years of boogers off!
SARAH CYNTHIA SYLVIA STOUT WOULD NOT TAKE THE GARBAGE OUT
Sarah Cynthia Sylvia Stout
Would not take the garbage out.
She’d wash the dishes and scrub the pans
Cook the yams and spice the hams,
And though her parents would scream and shout,
She simply would not take the garbage out.
And so it piled up to the ceiling:
Coffee grounds, potato peelings,
Brown bananas and rotten peas,
Chunks of sour cottage cheese,
It filled the can, it covered the floor,
It cracked the windows and blocked the door,
With bacon rinds and chicken bones,
Drippy ends of ice cream cones,
Prune pits, peach pits, orange peels,
Gloppy glumps of cold oatmeal,
Pizza crusts and withered greens,
Soggy beans, and tangerines,
Crusts of black burned buttered toast,
Grisly bits of beefy roast…
The garbage rolled on down the hall,
It raised the roof, it broke the wall…
Greasy napkins, cookie crumbs,
Globs of gooey bubble gum,
Cellophane from green baloney,
Rubbery, blubbery macaroni,
Peanut butter, caked and dry,
Curdled milk, and crusts of pie,
Rotting melons, dried-up mustard,
Eggshells mixed with lemon custard,
Cold French fries and rancid meat,
Yellow lumps of Cream of Wheat.
At last the garbage reached so high
That finally it touched the sky,
And all the neighbors moved away,
And none of her friends would come to play,
And finally, Sarah Cynthia Stout said,
“OKAY, I’ll take the garbage out!”
But then, of course it was too late…
The garbage reached across the state,
From New York to the Golden Gate,
And there in the garbage she did hate,
Poor Sarah met an awful fate
That I cannot right now relate
Because the hour is much too late
But children, remember Sarah Stout,
And always take the garbage out!
It comes as no surprise Jessica grew up to be a goofball. I thank God every day for allowing me to be her mom.
Reminder: Getting Me Back (The Voices Within) released this month…