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…
If you’re a pretender, come sit by my fire
For we have some flax-golden tales to spin.
This is the first poem by Shel Silverstein that I will be talking about, as he has been one of my favorite poets since childhood. My first ever favorite book of poems was Where the Sidewalk Ends and this is the very first poem in that book. Every time I see it my heart swells with a childlike enthusiasm and nostalgia just takes over. Shel was like Seuss. Sometimes the work is absolutely silly and nonsensical, but then there are things that are so deep and powerful, even if the creatures are obviously fake and the names make you laugh, you feel something honest deep in your gut and take the lesson with you without even trying to.
This first poem is sort of like a welcoming, a smile from an old friend as you walk through the door. It’s just that comforting to me. Not to mention what it’s saying. I was that dreamer, and I told my lies. But this poem is saying it’s not a bad thing to tell stories, we can tell stories together. Find your fellow storytellers and tell your stories together. It was nice to know that somewhere, someone didn’t mind that I was constantly daydreaming, wishing on stars, and playing pretend even when others felt I was too old for that. It was nice to know that somewhere out there there was someone doing those things too.