Childhood: the value of secrecy

(Or “Everybody is entitled to dream, even those who came before MLK”)

Eugene Field was an American writer best known for his children’s poetry, reports Wikipedia. I, on the other hand, report that translating a poem of his can be quite a challenge. Mr. Field—no doubt—had his own understanding of what childhood meant. And in this particular case, I am sure he sensed that children value secrecy—perhaps just as much as we do. These are the last three verses of his poem “The Dream” from Songs and Other Verse (for the full poem click here):



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These were the dreams that came one night
To earth from yonder sky;
These were the dreams two dreamers dreamed—
My little boy and I.
And in our hearts my boy and I

Were glad that it was so;
He loved to dream of days to come,
And I of long ago.
So from our dreams my boy and I
Unwillingly awoke,

But neither of his precious dream
Unto the other spoke.
Yet of the love we bore those dreams
Gave each his tender sign;
For there was triumph in his eyes—
And there were tears in mine!


— Alexia Raynal, Zeteo Managing Editor


Illustrations by Maxfield Parrish, who illustrated several of Eugene Field’s poems. These images do not originally accompany the poem featured here.

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