E. E. Cummings


Chansons Innocentes: I


in Just-
spring when the world is mud-
luscious the little
lame balloonman

whistles far and wee

and eddieandbill come
running from marbles and
piracies and it's
spring

when the world is puddle-wonderful

the queer
old balloonman whistles
far andwee
and bettyandisbel come dancing

from hop-scotch and jump-rope and

it's
spring
and
the
goat-footed

balloonMan whistles
far
and
wee

Submitted: Monday, January 20, 2003

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  • A.K. Farrar (3/1/2007 1:40:00 AM)

    One of the greatest poems in recent times on the subject of Spring, renewal and its mythological connections.

    The 'goat footed' is obviously a reference to pan - and all the associated power of nature (nothing devilish at all!) .

    What energy in the children (the Springtime of humankind) .

    What a wonderful idea to link the deep mythological past with dancing youth. (Report) Reply

  • Betsy Gottesman (6/8/2005 6:53:00 PM)

    It's obvious that the balloonman is a Satanic figure, because of the goat feet. I never thought about him being a pedophile, but that makes perfect sense. I always just had the impression of this evil little man luring the children away. (Report) Reply

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