The Life of Shel Silverstein

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A Shel Silverstein Research Paper

Talissa
May 18, 2005
Period 5
Poetry Project
Shel Silverstein
"If you are a dreamer, come in, If you are a dreamer, a wisher, a liar, A hope-er, a pray-er, a magic bean buyer…" With these soft angelic and often crazy words used in his poem "Invitation", Shel Silverstein opens up a world of his own. A world of flying children, turtles who fall in love and all kinds of creative things that have made Shel Silverstein the well known "multi threat artist" who composes, sings, draws, illustrates, and writes, that we all know today. Mr. Shelby Silverstein was born in Chicago, 1932, when everything was bleak and miserable. For the majority of his life, he wasn’t known at all, since he never tried to get publicity. All of this changed when he was stationed In Japan and Korea and started submitting cartoons to an army publication called ‘Starts & Stripes’. He soon became a regular cartoonist for this publication, and started developing his talent for drawing and coming up with wacky ideas. Upon returning home and having to cease work as a cartoonist, Silverstein was caught between jobs and worked at a hot dog stand, until he found publications to submit his now, almost known, work. He managed to scrape a few cartoons into magazines such as Look, This week, and Sports Illustrated, but he found his true calling at drawing for Playboy magazine starting around 1955. Because Playboy was steadily increasing in popularity, Shel Silverstein started becoming nationally known for his cutting edge, and "satirical and provocative content". His cartoons appeared in every issue from 1957 until 1976. After and during his work with the magazines, he started to write as well. His first writings were compositions or songs. He had many songs and many albums, including all genres of music. Jazz, Elektra, Folk songs, and comedic songs were just some of the many types of music that Silverstein produced. However, this is not all that Silverstein was...
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