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Famous Child Poems by Famous Poets

These are examples of famous Child poems written by some of the greatest and most-well-known modern and classical poets. PoetrySoup is a great educational poetry resource of famous child poems. These examples illustrate what a famous child poem looks like and its form, scheme, or style (where appropriate).

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by Wilde, Oscar
...eet upon the hearth, and flings
The sappy billets on the waning fire,
And laughs to see the sudden lightening scare
His children at their play, and yet, - the spring is in the air;

Already the slim crocus stirs the snow,
And soon yon blanched fields will bloom again
With nodding cowslips for some lad to mow,
For with the first warm kisses of the rain
The winter's icy sorrow breaks to tears,
And the brown thrushes mate, and with bright eyes the rabbit peers

From the dark war...Read More



by Keats, John
...and silver stir
Of strings in hollow shells; and there shall be
Beautiful things made new, for the surprise
Of the sky-children; I will give command:
Thea! Thea! Thea! where is Saturn?"
This passion lifted him upon his feet,
And made his hands to struggle in the air,
His Druid locks to shake and ooze with sweat,
His eyes to fever out, his voice to cease.
He stood, and heard not Thea's sobbing deep;
A little time, and then again he snatch'd
Utterance thus.---"But cann...Read More

by Alighieri, Dante
...und us sighs so many and deep there came 
 That all the air was motioned. I beheld 
 Concourse of men and women and children there 
 Countless. No pain was theirs of cold or flame, 
 But sadness only. And my Master said, 
 "Art silent here? Before ye further go 
 Among them wondering, it is meet ye know 
 They are not sinful, nor the depths below 
 Shall claim them. But their lives of righteousness 
 Sufficed not to redeem. The gate decreed, 
 Being born t...Read More

by Wordsworth, William
...changed, that was so fair to view,  'Tis fair enough for thee, my dove!  My beauty, little child, is flown;  But thou will live with me in love,  And what if my poor cheek be brown?  'Tis well for me, thou canst not see  How pale and wan it else would be.   Dread not their taunts, my little life!  I am thy father's wedded wife;  And underneath ...Read More

by Frost, Robert
...le is right."
"But teacher told the school
There's no such name."
"Teachers don't know as much
As fathers about children, you tell teacher.
You tell her that it's M-A-P-L-E.
You ask her if she knows a maple tree.
Well, you were named after a maple tree.
Your mother named you. You and she just saw
Each other in passing in the room upstairs,
One coming this way into life, and one
Going the other out of life—you know?
So you can't have much recollecti...Read More



by St Vincent Millay, Edna
...was not like to be where feasting is,
Nor near to Heaven's lord,
Being a thing abhorred
And shunned of him, although a child of his,
(Not yours, not yours; to you she owes not breath,
Mother of Song, being sown of Zeus upon a dream of Death).
Fearing to pass unvisited some place
And later learn, too late, how all the while,
With her still face,
She had been standing there and seen me pass, without a smile,
I sought her even to the sagging board whereat
The stout immortal...Read More

by Whitman, Walt
...wells beneath them; 
And mossy scabs of the worm fence, and heap’d stones, elder, mullen and
 poke-weed.

6
A child said, What is the grass? fetching it to me with full hands; 
How could I answer the child? I do not know what it is, any more than he. 

I guess it must be the flag of my disposition, out of hopeful green stuff woven.


Or I guess it is the handkerchief of the Lord, 
A scented gift and remembrancer, designedly dropt,
Bearing the owner’s...Read More

by Chesterton, G K
...ven fall and the world end,
O God, how long ago.

For the end of the world was long ago,
And all we dwell to-day
As children of some second birth,
Like a strange people left on earth
After a judgment day.

For the end of the world was long ago,
When the ends of the world waxed free,
When Rome was sunk in a waste of slaves,
And the sun drowned in the sea.

When Caesar's sun fell out of the sky
And whoso hearkened right
Could only hear the plunging
Of the nations in...Read More

by Wordsworth, William
...!   With other ministrations thou, O nature!'  Healest thy wandering and distempered child:  Thou pourest on him thy soft influences.  Thy sunny hues, fair forms, and breathing sheets,  Thy melodies of woods, and winds, and waters,  Till he relent, and can no more endure  To be a jarring and a dissonant thing,  Amid this general dance and minstrelsy; ...Read More

by Bradstreet, Anne
...1.1 Lo now! four other acts upon the stage,
1.2 Childhood, and Youth, the Manly, and Old-age.
1.3 The first: son unto Phlegm, grand-child to water,
1.4 Unstable, supple, moist, and cold's his Nature.
1.5 The second: frolic claims his pedigree;
1.6 From blood and air, for hot and moist is he.
1.7 The third of fire and choler is compos'd,
1.8 Vindicative, and quarrelsome ...Read More

by Bridges, Robert Seymour
...made, ere ever he could know
The mighty mother must be so obey'd. 
For lack of knowledge and thro' little skill
His childish mimicry outwent his aim;
His effort shaped the genius of his will;
Till thro' distinction and revolt he came,
True to his simple terms of good and ill,
Seeking the face of Beauty without blame. 

17
Say who be these light-bearded, sunburnt faces
In negligent and travel-stain'd array,
That in the city of Dante come to-day,
Haughtily visiting her ...Read More

by Tennyson, Alfred Lord
...e, 
"Saw ye no more? I, Galahad, saw the Grail, 
The Holy Grail, descend upon the shrine: 
I saw the fiery face as of a child 
That smote itself into the bread, and went; 
And hither am I come; and never yet 
Hath what thy sister taught me first to see, 
This Holy Thing, failed from my side, nor come 
Covered, but moving with me night and day, 
Fainter by day, but always in the night 
Blood-red, and sliding down the blackened marsh 
Blood-red, and on the naked mountain top 
B...Read More

by Carroll, Lewis
...Dedication

Inscribed to a dear Child:
in memory of golden summer hours
and whispers of a summer sea.


Girt with a boyish garb for boyish task,
 Eager she wields her spade; yet loves as well
Rest on a friendly knee, intent to ask
 The tale he loves to tell.

Rude spirits of the seething outer strife,
 Unmeet to read her pure and simple spright,
Deem, if you list, such hours a wast...Read More

by Chaucer, Geoffrey
...as I may),
A worthy duke that hight Perithous
That fellow was to the Duke Theseus
Since thilke* day that they were children lite** *that **little
Was come to Athens, his fellow to visite,
And for to play, as he was wont to do;
For in this world he loved no man so;
And he lov'd him as tenderly again.
So well they lov'd, as olde bookes sayn,
That when that one was dead, soothly to sayn,
His fellow went and sought him down in hell:
But of that story list me not to write...Read More

by Scott, Sir Walter
...ind's summer sighs.
     XII.

     Boon nature scattered, free and wild,
     Each plant or flower, the mountain's child.
     Here eglantine embalmed the air,
     Hawthorn and hazel mingled there;
     The primrose pale and violet flower
     Found in each cliff a narrow bower;
     Foxglove and nightshade, side by side,
     Emblems of punishment and pride,
     Grouped their dark hues with every stain
     The weather-beaten crags retain.
     With boughs th...Read More

by Shelley, Percy Bysshe
...ned, deep night
"Caught them ere evening." "Who is he with chin
Upon his breast and hands crost on his chain?"
"The Child of a fierce hour; he sought to win
"The world, and lost all it did contain
Of greatness, in its hope destroyed; & more
Of fame & peace than Virtue's self can gain
"Without the opportunity which bore
Him on its eagle's pinion to the peak
From which a thousand climbers have before
"Fall'n as Napoleon fell."--I felt my cheek
Alter to see the great for...Read More

by Miller, Alice Duer
...ht;
And see him the next morning, in the park,
Complete in busbee, marching to embark.
I had read freely, even as a child,
Not only Meredith and Oscar Wilde
But many novels of an earlier day—
Ravenshoe, Can You Forgive Her?, Vivien Grey,
Ouida, The Duchess, Broughton's Red As a Rose,
Guy Livingstone, Whyte-Melville— Heaven knows
What others. Now, I thought, I was to see
Their habitat, though like the Miller of Dee,
I cared for none and no one cared for me.


III 
...Read More

by Plath, Sylvia
...suck up? Am I a pulse
That wanes and wanes, facing the cold angel?
Is this my lover then? This death, this death?
As a child I loved a lichen-bitten name.
Is this the one sin then, this old dead love of death?

THIRD VOICE:
I remember the minute when I knew for sure.
The willows were chilling,
The face in the pool was beautiful, but not mine--
It had a consequential look, like everything else,
And all I could see was dangers: doves and words,
Stars and showers of gol...Read More

by Angelou, Maya
...When you come to me, unbidden,
Beckoning me
To long-ago rooms,
Where memories lie.

Offering me, as to a child, an attic,
Gatherings of days too few.
Baubles of stolen kisses.
Trinkets of borrowed loves.
Trunks of secret words,

I cry....Read More

by Akhmatova, Anna
...
Over great sorrows a white gown"

II

From the burning forests is flying
Sweet smell of the evergreens.
Over children soldiers' wives are moaning
Cry of widows through village rings.

Not in vain were the prayers rendered,
The earth was thirsty for rain:
The stomped-over fields with red dampness
Were covered and covered remain.

Low, low is the empty heaven,
And quiet is the praying one's voice:
"They will wound your most holy body
And cast dice ...Read More

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