CROCODILE’S TOOTHACHE – Poem for Toothache Day

Shel Silverstein (1930-1999), beloved children’s book author, poet, singer-songwriter, cartoonist, and screenwriter, has over 20 million books in print in 30 languages.

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To read Shel Silverstein’s poem, Crocodile’s Toothache, click here:

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Crocodile’s Toothache

by Shel Silverstein

Oh the Crocodile
Went to the dentist
And sat down in the chair,
And the dentist said, ‘Now tell me, sir,
Why does it hurt and where?’
And the Crocodile said, ‘I’ll tell you the truth.
I have a terrible ache in my tooth.’
And he opened his jaws so wide, so wide,
That the dentist he climbed right inside,
And the dentist laughed, ‘Oh, isn’t this fun?’
As he pulled the teeth out, one by one.
And the Crocodile cried, ‘You’re hurting me so!
Please put down your pliers and let me go.’
But the dentist just laughed with a Ho Ho Ho,
And he said, ‘I still have twelve to go —
Oops, that’s the wrong one, I confess.
But what’s one crocodile’s tooth, more or less?’
Then suddenly the jaws went snap,
And the dentist was gone right off the map.
And where he went one could only guess…
To North or South or East or West…
He left no forwarding address.
But what’s one dentist more or less?


“Crocodile’s Toothache” from Where the Sidewalk Ends, © 1974 by Evil Eye Music, Inc. – HarperCollins Children’s Books

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Nona Blyth Cloud has lived and worked in the Los Angeles area for the past 45 years, spending much of that time commuting on the 405 Freeway. After Hollywood failed to appreciate her genius for acting and directing, she began a second career managing non-profits, from which she has retired. Nona has now resumed writing whatever comes into her head, instead of reports and pleas for funding. She lives in a small house overrun by books with her wonderful husband and a bewildered Border Collie.
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