Where the Sidewalk Ends

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Where the Sidewalk Ends
Where the Sidewalk Ends.jpg
Author Shel Silverstein
Illustrator Shel Silverstein
Cover artist Shel Silverstein
Country United States of America
Language English
Genre Children's poetry
Publisher Harper Collins Publishers
Publication date
Pages 309 and Aric

Where the Sidewalk Ends is a 1974 children's poetry collection written and illustrated by Shel Silverstein. It was published by Harper and Row Publishers. The book's poems address many common childhood concerns and also present purely fanciful stories. Based on a 2007 online poll, the National Education Association named the book one of its "Teachers Top 100 Books for Children."[1]

A 30th Anniversary Edition of the book appeared in 2004, and two audio editions (1983 and 2000) are also available.

Contents and editions[edit]

The collection contains a series of poems, including the title poem "Where the Sidewalk Ends", as well as illustrations. The author dedicated this book "For Ursula" and gives thanks to Ursula Nordstrom, Barbara Borack, Kadijah Cooper, Dorothy Hagen, Beri Greenwald, Gloria Bressler, and Bill Cole.

In 2004, a special 30th Anniversary Edition was published, which included 12 new poems. The following titles are found only in the 30th Anniversary Edition:

  • The Truth About Turtles
  • Oops!
  • Mr. Grumpledump's Song
  • Naked Hippo
  • Who's Taller?
  • Monsters
  • Weightliftress
  • Don't Tell Me
  • Ten-O-Cycle
  • The Unfunny Jester
  • Open—Close
  • Gorilla

Audio editions[edit]

Original album[edit]

The audio edition of the book was originally released as an album 1983, which won the 1984 Grammy Award for Best Recording For Children. The collection is recited, sung, and shouted by Shel Silverstein himself and produced by Ron Haffkine. Released on Columbia/CBS Records, he also performed it at the 1984 Grammy Awards.

The following poems can be heard on the album:

Side A

  • Invitation
  • Eighteen Flavors-A person labels all the flavors on their ice cream cone before accidentally dropping them all.
  • Melinda Mae-A girl tries to eat an entire whale, and actually does so and finishes in eighty years.
  • Sick-A girl gives excuses not to go to school.
  • Ickle Me, Pickle Me, Tickle Me Too-Three brothers go for a ride in a giant flying shoe.
  • Enter This Deserted House
  • Jimmy Jet and His TV Set-A boy accidentally watches too much TV, therefore, he is turned into a TV.
  • For Sale-Someone tries to sell their little sister, whom they think is quite annoying.
  • Warning-Why people shouldn't pick their noses.
  • The Yipiyuk-A creature bites on a man's foot and refuses to let go.
  • Crocodile’s Toothache-A crocodile does not like it when a dentist fools around with his teeth.
  • Stone Telling
  • Ridiculous Rose-A girl misunderstands what her mother says.
  • Boa Constrictor-A man suffers being eaten by a snake.
  • Peanut–Butter Sandwich-A king loves peanut butter sandwiches, but when he eats an extra sticky one, the peanut butter causes trouble.
  • Listen to the Mustn’ts-A mother tells her child why they should listen to what they're not supposed to do.
  • I will not hatch-A baby chick refuses to hatch from its egg.

Side B

  • Hug o’ War-A kid plays a game that includes hugging.
  • Smart- A kid gets a dollar from his dad only to trade it for a smaller amount of money.
  • Forgotten Language
  • The Farmer and the Queen-A farmer wants to impress a queen, so he asks his animals for suggestions.
  • The One Who Stayed
  • No Difference
  • Wild Boar
  • Thumbs
  • Sarah Cynthia Silvia Stout Would Not Take The Garbage Out-A girl refuses take out the garbage, which causes trouble for the whole world.
  • My Hobby
  • Early Bird
  • Me–Stew-When a cook runs out of food for a stew, he decides to make one out of himself.
  • Captain Hook-A story about the legendary pirate, Captain Hook.
  • With His Mouth Full of Food-A boy known as Milford DuPree habitually and deliberately talks with his mouthful of food so much that eventually his parents have a gluer glue his mouth.
  • The Flying Festoon
  • The Silver Fish
  • The Generals
  • The Worst
  • My Beard-A man grows a beard that's so long that he runs naked down the street.
  • Merry...-A family sets up Christmas at the wrong period of time.
  • The Search

Silverstein, Shel. Where the Sidewalk Ends. 30. New York: Scholastic, 2005. 1-187.


  • Producer & Director: Ron Haffkine, Keith Cozart
  • Engineer: jb & Danny Mundhenk & Oliver Masciarotte
  • Mastering: Denny Purcell

Recorded at Bullet Recording, Nashville, Blank Tapes, New York, and in Studio D at Criteria Recording in Miami, Florida.

25th anniversary album[edit]

In 2000, the album was re-released on cassette and CD for the 25th anniversary of the book. This collection is copyrighted 1984 and 2000 by Sony Music Entertainment Inc. The collection is again recited, sung, and shouted by Shel Silverstein.

The 25th anniversary edition also contains 11 previously unreleased tracks culled from the original master tapes. They are as follows:

  • The Little Blue Engine
  • If I Had a Brontosaurus
  • One Inch Tall-A girl wonders what it would be like to be tiny.
  • Long-Haired Boy-A boy gets taunted for having such long hair, that he flies all across town, with many people mistaking him for a hero.
  • Rain
  • True Story-A man has an adventure that holds a lot of dangers.
  • Hungry Mungry-A villain overeats so much, that he ends up eating the whole world.
  • Standing
  • If The World Was Crazy-A man wonders what might happen if the world was mixed up.
  • Hector the Collector
  • Spaghetti-A man gets covered in spaghetti when people at a party misunderstand him.


  1. ^ National Education Association (2007). "Teachers' Top 100 Books for Children". Retrieved August 22, 2012. 

External links[edit]