If I could carve poems in wood,
By children they would be understood,
So near to the sense things have in God
Are both my poems and children’s thought.
For a child knows that logic and meaning
Are only nothing nothing screening,
And a child is only divinely aware
That all things are toys and all things are fair.
That a thimble, a stone and a cotton-reel
Are things we can quite divinely feel,
And that, if we make men out of those things,
They are really men, not imaginings.
I would therefore I could take my verse
Out of mere ideas and better it worse
To visible carving or drawing or what
My verses could be resembling that.
Then would I be the children’s poet.
And, though perhaps I might never know it
With the outer sense that makes life sadder,
In every innocent face made gladder
God would be giving my soul the sense,
Lost back of knowledge, of recompense –
The sense of children more children still
When, acting my poems at their glad will,
They, playing with toys, with legs incurled,
Lightly err the visible world.