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Best Famous Childhood Poems

Here is a collection of the all-time best famous Childhood poems. This is a select list of the best famous Childhood poetry. Reading, writing, and enjoying famous Childhood poetry (as well as classical and contemporary poems) is a great past time. These top poems are the best examples of childhood poems.

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by Elizabeth Barrett Browning | |

How Do I Love Thee?

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
I love thee to the depth and breadth and height My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight For the ends of Being and ideal Grace.
I love thee to the level of every day's Most quiet need, by sun and candlelight.
I love thee freely, as men strive for Right; I love thee purely, as they turn from Praise.
I love with a passion put to use In my old griefs, and with my childhood's faith.
I love thee with a love I seemed to lose With my lost saints, I love thee with the breath, Smiles, tears, of all my life! and, if God choose, I shall but love thee better after death.


by Philip Larkin | |

Triple Time

 This empty street, this sky to blandness scoured,
This air, a little indistinct with autumn
Like a reflection, constitute the present --
A time traditionally soured,
A time unrecommended by event.
But equally they make up something else: This is the furthest future childhood saw Between long houses, under travelling skies, Heard in contending bells -- An air lambent with adult enterprise, And on another day will be the past, A valley cropped by fat neglected chances That we insensately forbore to fleece.
On this we blame our last Threadbare perspectives, seasonal decrease.


by William Lisle Bowles | |

XI. Written at Ostend

 HOW sweet the tuneful bells' responsive peal! 
As when, at opening morn, the fragrant breeze 
Breathes on the trembling sense of wan disease, 
So piercing to my heart their force I feel! 
And hark! with lessening cadence now they fall, 
And now, along the white and level tide, 
They fling their melancholy music wide, 
Bidding me many a tender thought recall 
Of summer-days, and those delightful years, 
When by my native streams, in life's fair prime, 
The mournful magic of their mingling chime 
First wak'd my wond'ring childhood into tears! 
But seeming now, when all those days are o'er, 
The sounds of joy, once heard, and heard no more.


by William Lisle Bowles | |

Sonnet: At Ostend July 22nd 1787

 How sweet the tuneful bells' responsive peal!
As when, at opening morn, the fragrant breeze
Breathes on the trembling sense of wan disease,
So piercing to my heart their force I feel!
And hark! with lessening cadence now they fall,
And now, along the white and level tide,
They fling their melancholy music wide,
Bidding me many a tender thought recall
Of summer-days, and those delightful years
When by my native streams, in life's fair prime,
The mournful magic of their mingling chime
First waked my wond'ring childhood into tears;— 
But seeming now, when all those days are o'er,
The sounds of joy, once heard, and heard no more.


by George William Russell | |

Inheritance

 AS flow the rivers to the sea
Adown from rocky hill or plain,
A thousand ages toiled for thee
And gave thee harvest of their gain;
And weary myriads of yore
Dug out for thee earth’s buried ore.
The shadowy toilers for thee fought In chaos of primeval day Blind battles with they knew not what; And each before he passed away Gave clear articulate cries of woe: Your pain is theirs of long ago.
And all the old heart sweetness sung, The joyous life of man and maid In forests when the earth was young, In rumours round your childhood strayed: The careless sweetness of your mind Comes from the buried years behind.
And not alone unto your birth Their gifts the weeping ages bore, The old descents of God on earth Have dowered thee with celestial lore: So, wise, and filled with sad and gay You pass unto the further day.


by George William Russell | |

In Memoriam

 POOR little child, my pretty boy,
Why did the hunter mark thee out?
Wert thou betrayed by thine own joy?
Singled through childhood’s merry shout?


And who on such a gentle thing
Let slip the Hound that none may bar,
That shall o’ertake the swiftest wing
And tear the heavens down star by star?


And borne away unto the night,
What comfort in the vasty hall?
Can That which towers from depth to height
Melt in Its mood majestical,


And laugh with thee as child to child?
Or shall the gay light in thine eyes
Drop stricken there before the piled
Immutable immensities?


Or shall the Heavenly Wizard turn
Thy frailty to might in Him,
And make my laughing elf to burn
Comrade of crested cherubim?


The obscure vale emits no sound,
No sight, the chase has hurried far:
The Quarry and the phantom Hound,
Where are they now? Beyond what star?


by George William Russell | |

Affinity

 YOU and I have found the secret way,
None can bar our love or say us nay:
All the world may stare and never know
You and I are twined together so.
You and I for all his vaunted width Know the giant Space is but a myth; Over miles and miles of pure deceit You and I have found our lips can meet.
You and I have laughed the leagues apart In the soft delight of heart to heart.
If there’s a gulf to meet or limit set, You and I have never found it yet.
You and I have trod the backward way To the happy heart of yesterday, To the love we felt in ages past.
You and I have found it still to last.
You and I have found the joy had birth In the angel childhood of the earth, Hid within the heart of man and maid.
You and I of Time are not afraid.
You and I can mock his fabled wing, For a kiss is an immortal thing.
And the throb wherein those old lips met Is a living music in us yet.


by Ella Wheeler Wilcox | |

Refuted

 ‘Anticipation is sweeter than realisation.
’ It may be, yet I have not found it so.
In those first golden dreams of future fame I did not find such happiness as came When toil was crowned with triumph.
Now I know My words have recognition, and will go Straight to some listening heart, my early aim, To win the idle glory of a name, Pales like a candle in the noonday’s glow.
So with the deeper joys of which I dreamed: Life yields more rapture than did childhood’s fancies, And each year brings more pleasure than I waited.
Friendship proves truer than of old it seemed, And, all beyond youth’s passion-hued romances, Love is more perfect than anticipated.


by Rainer Maria Rilke | |

Before Summer Rain

Suddenly from all the green around you
something-you don't know what-has disappeared;
you feel it creeping closer to the window
in total silence.
From the nearby wood you hear the urgent whistling of a plover reminding you of someone's Saint Jerome: so much solitude and passion come from that one voice whose fierce request the downpour will grant.
The walls with their ancient portraits glide away from us cautiously as though they weren't supposed to hear what we are saying.
And reflected on the faded tapestries now: the chill uncertain sunlight of those long childhood hours when you were so afraid.


by Rainer Maria Rilke | |

As Once The Winged Energy Of Delight

 As once the winged energy of delight
carried you over childhood's dark abysses,
now beyond your own life build the great
arch of unimagined bridges.
Wonders happen if we can succeed in passing through the harshest danger; but only in a bright and purely granted achievement can we realize the wonder.
To work with Things in the indescribable relationship is not too hard for us; the pattern grows more intricate and subtle, and being swept along is not enough.
Take your practiced powers and stretch them out until they span the chasm between two contradictions.
.
.
For the god wants to know himself in you.


by Rainer Maria Rilke | |

Childhood

 It would be good to give much thought, before
you try to find words for something so lost,
for those long childhood afternoons you knew
that vanished so completely --and why?

We're still reminded--: sometimes by a rain,
but we can no longer say what it means;
life was never again so filled with meeting,
with reunion and with passing on

as back then, when nothing happened to us
except what happens to things and creatures:
we lived their world as something human,
and became filled to the brim with figures.
And became as lonely as a sheperd and as overburdened by vast distances, and summoned and stirred as from far away, and slowly, like a long new thread, introduced into that picture-sequence where now having to go on bewilders us.


by Lucy Maud Montgomery | |

The Seeker

 I sought for my happiness over the world,
Oh, eager and far was my quest;
I sought it on mountain and desert and sea,
I asked it of east and of west.
I sought it in beautiful cities of men, On shores that were sunny and blue, And laughter and lyric and pleasure were mine In palaces wondrous to view; Oh, the world gave me much to my plea and my prayer But never I found aught of happiness there! Then I took my way back to a valley of old And a little brown house by a rill, Where the winds piped all day in the sentinel firs That guarded the crest of the hill; I went by the path that my childhood had known Through the bracken and up by the glen, And I paused at the gate of the garden to drink The scent of sweet-briar again; The homelight shone out through the dusk as of yore And happiness waited for me at the door!


by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe | |

GROWTH.

 O'ER field and plain, in childhood's artless days,

Thou sprang'st with me, on many a spring-morn fair.
"For such a daughter, with what pleasing care, Would I, as father, happy dwellings raise!" And when thou on the world didst cast thy gaze, Thy joy was then in household toils to share.
"Why did I trust her, why she trust me e'er? For such a sister, how I Heaven should praise!" Nothing can now the beauteous growth retard; Love's glowing flame within my breast is fann'd.
Shall I embrace her form, my grief to end? Thee as a queen must I, alas, regard: So high above me placed thou seem'st to stand; Before a passing look I meekly bend.
1807?8.


by Walter de la Mare | |

The Remonstrance

 I was at peace until you came 
And set a careless mind aflame; 
I lived in quiet; cold, content; 
All longing in safe banishment, 
Until your ghostly lips and eyes 
Made wisdom unwise.
Naught was in me to tempt your feet To seek a lodging.
Quite forgot Lay the sweet solitude we two In childhood used to wander through; Time's cold had closed my heart about, And shut you out.
Well, and what then? .
.
.
O vision grave, Take all the little all I have! Strip me of what in voiceless throught Life's kept of life, unhoped, unsought! -- Reverie and dream that memory must Hide deep in dust! This only I say: Though cold and bare, The haunted house you have chosen to share, Still 'neath its walls the moonbeam goes And trembles on the untended rose; Still o'er its broken roof-tree rise The starry arches of the skies; And 'neath your lightest word shall be The thunder of an ebbing sea.


by A S J Tessimond | |

Any Man Speaks

 I, after difficult entry through my mother's blood
And stumbling childhood (hitting my head against the world);
I, intricate, easily unshipped, untracked, unaligned;
Cut off in my communications; stammering; speaking
A dialect shared by you, but not you and you;
I, strangely undeft, bereft; I searching always
For my lost rib (clothed in laughter yet understanding)
To come round the corner of Wardour Street into the Square
Or to signal across the Park and share my bed;
I, focus in night for star-sent beams of light,
I, fulcrum of levers whose end I cannot see .
.
.
Have this one deftness - that I admit undeftness: Know that the stars are far, the levers long: Can understand my unstrength.


by Elizabeth Barrett Browning | |

How do I Love thee? Let me Count the Ways

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
I love thee to the depth and breadth and height My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight For the ends of Being and ideal Grace.
I love thee to the level of everyday's Most quiet need, by sun and candle-light.
I love thee freely, as men strive for Right; I love thee purely, as they turn from Praise.
I love thee with a passion put to use In my old griefs, and with my childhood's faith.
I love thee with a love I seemed to lose With my lost saints, --- I love thee with the breath, Smiles, tears, of all my life! --- and, if God choose, I shall but love thee better after death.


by Lam Quang My | |

New Year’s Night

The lightening tears the night – thunder rolls 
Bans all coldness from the room
The smell of incense calls to childhood
Pulsating fire recalls the word “Mammy!”


by Donald Justice | |

Absences

 It's snowing this afternoon and there are no flowers.
There is only this sound of falling, quiet and remote, Like the memory of scales descending the white keys Of a childhood piano--outside the window, palms! And the heavy head of the cereus, inclining, Soon to let down its white or yellow-white.
Now, only these poor snow-flowers in a heap, Like the memory of a white dress cast down .
.
.
So much has fallen.
And I, who have listened for a step All afternoon, hear it now, but already falling away, Already in memory.
And the terrible scales descending On the silent piano; the snow; and the absent flowers abounding.


by Charles Kingsley | |

A Farewell

 I GO down from the hills half in gladness, and half with a pain I depart,
Where the Mother with gentlest breathing made music on lip and in heart;
For I know that my childhood is over: a call comes out of the vast,
And the love that I had in the old time, like beauty in twilight, is past.
I am fired by a Danaan whisper of battles afar in the world, And my thought is no longer of peace, for the banners in dream are unfurled, And I pass from the council of stars and of hills to a life that is new: And I bid to you stars and you mountains a tremulous long adieu.
I will come once again as a master, who played here as child in my dawn I will enter the heart of the hills where the gods of the old world are gone.
And will war like the bright Hound of Ulla with princes of earth and of sky.
For my dream is to conquer the heavens and battle for kingship on high.


by Pablo Neruda | |

The White Mans Burden

 Lost in the forest, I broke off a dark twig
and lifted its whisper to my thirsty lips:
maybe it was the voice of the rain crying,
a cracked bell, or a torn heart.
Something from far off it seemed deep and secret to me, hidden by the earth, a shout muffled by huge autumns, by the moist half-open darkness of the leaves.
Wakening from the dreaming forest there, the hazel-sprig sang under my tongue, its drifting fragrance climbed up through my conscious mind as if suddenly the roots I had left behind cried out to me, the land I had lost with my childhood--- and I stopped, wounded by the wandering scent