When children play the livelong day,
Like birds and butterflies,
As free and gay sport life away,
And know not care nor sighs;
Then earth and air seem fresh and fair,
All peace below, above;
Life’s flowers are there, and everywhere
Is innocence and love.
When children pray with fear all day,
A blight must be at hand;
Then joys decay, and birds of prey
Are hovering o’er the land.
When young hearts weep as they go to sleep,
Then all the world seems sad;
The flesh must creep, and woes are deep,
When children are not glad.