|Chestnuts, Burrs, and Leaves|
The Barefoot Boy by John Greenleaf Whittier
Blessings on thee, little man,
Barefoot boy, with cheek of tan!
With thy turned-up pantaloons,
And thy merry whistled tunes;
With thy red lip, redder still
Kissed by strawberries on the hill;
With the sunshine on thy face,
Through thy torn brim’s jaunty grace;
From my heart I give thee joy,—
I was once a barefoot boy!
Barefoot Days by Rachel Field
In the morning, very early,
That’s the time I love to go
Barefoot where the fern grows curly
And the grass is cool between each toe,
On a summer morning – O!
On a summer morning!
That is when the birds go by
Up the sunny slopes of air,
And each rose has a butterfly
Or a golden bee to wear;
And I am glad in every toe –
Such a summer morning – O!
Such a summer morning!
For more information about the poets who wrote these poems, click "Read More" below.
|John Greenleaf Whittier|
The first poem "The Barefoot Boy" is by John Greenleaf Whittier (born Dec. 17, 1807, near Haverhill, Mass., U.S. — died Sept. 7, 1892, Hampton Falls, Mass.), a U.S. poet and reformer. A Quaker born on a farm, Whittier had limited education but was early acquainted with poetry. He became involved in journalism and published his first volume of poems in 1831. During 1833 – 42 he embraced the abolitionism of William Lloyd Garrison and became a prominent antislavery crusader. Thereafter he continued to support humanitarian causes while publishing further poetry volumes. After the Civil War he was noted for his vivid portrayals of rural New England life. His best-known poem is the nostalgic pastoral "Snow-Bound" (1866); others include "Maud Muller" (1854) and "Barbara Frietchie" (1863).
The second poem, "Barefoot Days" is by Rachel Lyman Field (September 19, 1894 – March 15, 1942), an American novelist, poet, and author of children's fiction. She is best known for her Newbery Medal–winning novel for young adults, Hitty, Her First Hundred Years, published in 1929. Field was born in New York City, and, as a child, contributed to the St. Nicholas Magazine. She was educated at Radcliffe College. Field was also a successful author of adult fiction, writing the bestsellers Time Out of Mind (1935), All This and Heaven Too (1938), and And Now Tomorrow (1942). She is also famous for her poem-turned-song "Something Told the Wild Geese". Field also wrote the English lyrics for the version of Franz Schubert's Ave Maria used in the Disney film Fantasia (film). Field married Arthur S. Pederson in 1935, with whom she collaborated in 1937 on To See Ourselves. She died in Los Angeles, California on March 15, 1942, of pneumonia following an operation.