Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, GLIMPSES OF CHILDHOOD: 3. THE DOLLS' HOSPITAL, by RICHARD EUGENE BURTON



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GLIMPSES OF CHILDHOOD: 3. THE DOLLS' HOSPITAL, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: In a little old building, up under the roof
Last Line: But the mending of legs and arms!
Subject(s): Children; Dancing & Dancers; Dolls; Grief; Hospitals; Life; Toys; Childhood; Sorrow; Sadness


IN a little old building, up under the roof,
Where you grope your way to the door,
The Hospital hides, and it seems aloof
From the city's rush and roar.

And here, to be tinkered as good as new,
Come the battered dolls at last,
Who have lived with children the long year through,
The favorites of the past.

High and low, they are hither borne,
Troops of them fill the place;
The fine French miss with her look of scorn,
And the rag child, meek of face.
They say, could you visit the wards by night,
When the grown-ups are all away,
You would witness then a wondrous sight
That you never will see by day.

For the small doll people forgather there,
The maimed and the mended all,
The limping beaux and the faded fair,
For a talk and a festival.
They dance to music, their limbs grow fleet,
They feast with a right good cheer,
Their tiny laughter shrills high and sweet,
Each walks with his chosen dear.

But, best of all, when the dance is done,
They chat of their checkered fates,
Of all doll-doings under the sun:
Their griefs, and their missing mates,
The sudden splendors, the chance and change,
The violence and the bliss;
And they whisper: "The thing called Life is strange!"
Then they say good night, with a kiss.

In the morning, never a doll has stirred,
And daylight has dimmed their charms;
You could swear that nothing at all occurred
But the mending of legs and arms!





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