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About this poet

Born in Newark, New Jersey, on February 2, 1931, Judith Viorst is the author of many works of fiction and nonfiction, for children as well as adults. She attended Rutgers University.

She is the author of a series of poetry books related to aging that include Unexpectedly Eighty:And Other Adaptations (Free Press, 2010) and When Did I Stop Being Twenty and Other Injustices: Selected Poems from Single to Mid-Life (Simon & Schuster, 1987). She is also the author of Murdering Mr. Monti (1994) and Necessary Losses (1986), which appeared on The New York Times best-seller list in hardcover and paperback for almost two years. Her children's books include The Tenth Good Thing About Barney (1971), The Alphabet From Z to A (1994), and the "Alexander" stories: Alexander, Who Used to be Rich Last Sunday (1978); Alexander, Who's Not (Do Your Hear Me? I Mean It!) Going to Move (1995); and Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day (1972).

A graduate of the Washington Psychoanalytic Institute, she is the recipient of various awards for her journalism and psychological writings. Judith Viorst lives in Washington, DC, with her husband, political writer Milton Viorst.

Some Things Don't Make Any Sense at All

Judith Viorst, 1931
My mom says I'm her sugarplum.
My mom says I'm her lamb.
My mom says I'm completely perfect
Just the way I am.
My mom says I'm a super-special wonderful terrific little guy.
My mom just had another baby.
Why?

From If I Were in Charge of the World and Other Worries . . ., published by Macmillan, 1981. Used with permission.

From If I Were in Charge of the World and Other Worries . . ., published by Macmillan, 1981. Used with permission.

Judith Viorst

Judith Viorst

Born in Newark, New Jersey, in 1931, Judith Viorst is the author of many works of poetry and prose both for children and adults

by this poet

poem
Mother doesn't want a dog.
Mother says they smell,
And never sit when you say sit,
Or even when you yell.
And when you come home late at night
And there is ice and snow,
You have to go back out because
The dumb dog has to go.

Mother doesn't want a dog.
Mother says they shed,
And always let the strangers in
And
poem
I'm learning to say thank you.
And I'm learning to say please.
And I'm learning to use Kleenex,
Not my sweater, when I sneeze.
And I'm learning not to dribble.
And I'm learning not to slurp.
And I'm learning (though it sometimes really hurts me)
Not to burp.
And I'm learning to chew softer
When I eat corn on the
poem
The tires on my bike are flat.
The sky is grouchy gray.
At least it sure feels like that
Since Hanna moved away.

Chocolate ice cream tastes like prunes.
December's come to stay.
They've taken back the Mays and Junes
Since Hanna moved away.

Flowers smell like halibut.
Velvet feels like hay.
Every handsome dog's