The Generals by Shel Silverstein

I recently heard the poem The Generals by Shel Silverstein on Laugh USA on XM Radio, of all places. This poem sums up my thoughts about war quite nicely. The poem is from his book of children’s poetry titled Where the Sidewalk Ends which was first read to me in elementary school. Anyhow, I hope you enjoy his poem as much as I did:

The Generals

Shel Silverstein

Said General Clay to General Gore,

“Oh must we fight this silly war?

To kill and die is such a bore.”

“I quite agree,” said General Gore.

Said General Gore to General Clay,

“We could go to the beach today

And have some ice cream on the way.”

“A grand idea,” said General Clay.

Said General Clay to General Gore,

“We’ll build sand castles on the shore.”

Said General Gore, “We’ll splash and play.”

“Let’s leave right now,” said General Clay.

Said General Gore so General Clay,

“But what if the sea is closed today?

And what if the sand’s been blown away?”

“A dreadful thought,” said General Clay.

Said General Gore to General Clay,

“I’ve always feared the ocean’s spray,

And we may drown!” “It’s true, we may.

It chills my blood,” said General Clay.

Said General Clay to General Gore,

“My bathing suit is slightly tore.

We’d better to on with our war.”

“I quite agree,” said General Gore.

Then General Clay charged General Gore

As bullets flew and cannons roared.

And now, alas! there is no more

Of General Clay or General Gore.

Advertisements

10 thoughts on “The Generals by Shel Silverstein

  1. That is such a wonderfully comic and tragic poem. Shel Silversein was brilliant. My sons adored all his books. I never took a really close look at them, so thanks for posting this particular poem. And thanks for commenting on my site!

  2. Posted a ficlet! My username is curbxstomp. I think. I don’t know yet. Anyway, I did a sequel and then I did, “Modern Day Merlin” because I thought of it during math. 😀 I love Shel Silverstein.
    curbxstomp

  3. Sounds a little like the Walrus and the Carpenter. They too went to the beach, talked about some fun nice things and then did something downright nasty.

  4. Pingback: Sunday Poems | Dust off the Bookshelf

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s