Author: Shel Silverstein
Sheldon Allan Silverstein, popularly known as Shel Silverstein, was born into a Jewish family on September \(25\), \(1930\), in Chicago, USA. He was a children's author, poet, playwright, songwriter, and cartoonist, and is best known for his light verse, illustrations, cartoons, and songs. He also wrote under the pen name Uncle Shelby.
Some of notable works include "Uncle Shelby's ABZ Book" (\(1960\)), "The Giving Tree" (\(1964\)), "Runny Rabbit" (\(2005\)), and collections of poems called "Where the Sidewalk Ends" (\(1974\)) and "A Light in the Attic" (\(1981\)). The poem "Whatif" is taken from the latter book of poems.
It has been said that "he was credited for helping young readers develop an appreciation of poetry, and his serious verse reveals an understanding of common childhood anxieties and wishes."**
Speaking of his approach to writing, most of Silverstein's works contain endings that are not purely happy. He believed that the children are likely to compare their lives to the works, and hence, would end up feeling disturbed for not having the ideal, fictional, and all-ends-happily kind of life.
Speaking about the style, Silverstein's works are often compared to the writings of Dr Seuss. It could also be said that our poet was inspired by the latter.
On May \(10\), \(1999\), Silverstein died at age \(68\) of a heart attack in Florida, USA.