At Dawn and Dusk

The Little People

Victor James Daley

WHO are these strange small folk,
    These that come to our homes as kings,
        Asking nor leave nor grace,
Bending our necks to their yoke,
        Taking the highest place,
    And mastery of all things?

Whence they come none may know,
    But a wondrous land it must be;
        Angels in exile they!
Here in this dull world below
        Creatures of sinful clay
    We feel near their purity.

Clearer their young eyes are
    Than the dew in the cups of flowers
        Gleaming, when shines at dawn,
Faintly, the morning’s one star—
        Eyes whose still gaze, indrawn,
    Sees things unseen by ours.

Deep in those orbs serene—
    Little planets be-ringed and bright—
        Mysteries marvellous lie:
Known unto us they might mean
        Faith, without fear, to die,
    All sure of the waiting light.

Dimpled their hands and small—
    Would ye, therefore, their might contemn?
        Seem they for play designed?
Fate, and the Future withal,
        Weal, yea and Woe, of mankind,
    Lie hid in the palms of them.

Tyrants, whose terrible names
    Make men pale with affright intense,
        Worshipping, kiss their feet:
Touch of their little hands tames
        Fiercest of hearts that beat—
    So mighty is Innocence.

These are the children dear,
    From a country unknown of charts:
        (Dim Land of Souls Unborn),
Rosy as morn they come here,
        Filling with joy forlorn
    Waste places in our hearts.

At Dawn and Dusk - Contents

Back    |    Words Home    |    Victor James Daley Home    |    Site Info.    |    Feedback