To a Sleeping Child

A poem by Arthur Hugh Clough

Lips, lips, open!
Up comes a little bird that lives inside
Up comes a little bird, and peeps, and out he flies.

All the day he sits inside, and sometimes he sings,
Up he comes, and out he goes at night to spread his wings.

Little bird, little bird, whither will you go?
Round about the world, while nobody can know.

Little bird, little bird, whither do you flee?
Far away around the world, while nobody can see.

Little bird, little bird, how long will you roam?
All round the world and around again home;

Round the round world, and back through the air,
When the morning comes, the little bird is there.

Back comes the little bird and looks and in he flies,
Up wakes the little boy, and opens both his eyes.

Sleep, sleep, little boy, little bird’s away,
Little bird will come again, by the peep of day;

Sleep, little boy, the little bird must go
Round about the world, while nobody can know.
Sleep, sleep sound, little bird goes round,
Round and round he goes; sleep, sleep sound.

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