Treasure Island

Ernestine Northover

(25th March 1943)

Childhood - The 21st Century


How advanced they are, these children of the future,
Like small adults, within their tiny frames,
They grow up in a fast 'speed driven' culture,
Where 'learning pressures' change their kind of games,
Where is their childhood, in all this hurly burly,
Where is their pure untainted view of things,
Why do they have to grow so old, so early,
And lose the joy that only childhood brings.

Our childhood was filled with thoughts of joy and gladness,
We lived our lives, oblivious to the world
And all the hardships, wars, the grief and sadness,
We stood, waiting for our lives to be unfurled.
We had time to grow, and gain an understanding,
Of each new phase, each change along the way,
As we grew slowly, our senses all expanding,
So with clarity, we slowly changed our play.

We had a framework on which to build and flourish,
Slow and steady, this was no rushed affair,
Taking each step, then step by step to nourish,
Our childhood, so finally adulthood we would share.
What will become, of these 'New Century' learners,
I doubt if they, a dreamy childhood see,
Will they then tell to all those bright discerners
Of their own, how they remembered their childhood to be.

Submitted: Wednesday, August 31, 2005
Edited: Thursday, May 20, 2010

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Comments about this poem (Childhood - The 21st Century by Ernestine Northover )

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  • Ashley Stone (3/26/2009 6:56:00 PM)

    Being a product of this 21st century I understand what you mean and long for a childhood I know I shall not receive. (Report) Reply

  • Andrew Blakemore (3/21/2008 3:46:00 PM)

    Yes children seem to grow up far too quickly nowadays. It's a real shame. Great write, I really enjoyed reading it. Andrew x (Report) Reply

  • Bethany Cook (4/28/2007 10:24:00 PM)

    hi,
    i am 17, writing an essay for society and culture about this topic...how childhood has changed since previous generations. anyone who may read this, i would love to hear any opinions and thoughts about this issue. ANYTHING will be muchly appreciated! !
    this is a great insightful poem...keep working! !
    thanks
    bethany

    cookie_089@hotmail.com (Report) Reply

  • Brian Dorn (1/4/2007 1:23:00 PM)

    Excellent thoughts, Ernestine... 'childhood' has certainly changed over the past thirty years. I suppose technology is to blame and, unfortunately, there's probably no turning back. Good write! !
    Brian (Report) Reply

  • Sylvia Spencer (9/12/2006 4:36:00 PM)

    Ernestine the poems that we write about the new kids on the block, if only they were like the children we knew so much wisdom and a really great poem cheers Sylviex (Report) Reply

  • Joseph Petrocelli (3/27/2006 10:28:00 AM)

    So pleased to find your work again. Missed it at CP. I couldn't agree with you more. I read some of the poems written by very young teens, suicide, depression. The world doesn't allow them to be children anymore. You write with such force on this one. Joe (Report) Reply

  • Duncan Wyllie (2/25/2006 5:20:00 AM)

    There is so much wisdom in this, the type of wisdom that is so very precious.We must all
    take a step back before taking any steps forward if we are to learn at all.
    Brilliantly put.Love Duncan.
    Lesson one for Childhood, a piece of plain paper, a box of colouring pencils and an eternal
    day of peace. (Report) Reply

  • Graham Jones (1/31/2006 8:19:00 AM)

    Ernistine you are with out a doubt my favourite poet, and very good friend, I so much admire your work, and this is just so well thought out it speaks to you with its flow, and good sense, I love it to bits.Regards Graham. (Report) Reply

  • Anabelle Compano (1/4/2006 6:52:00 PM)

    Along with the others, I have given you
    a much deserved ten.
    A though proking and serious poem.
    In one sense, because of the present
    state of the world, one could have the
    feeling of hopelessness. That said,
    we all know, each of us, can do our
    part to make the world a better place.
    God bless.
    Anabelle (Report) Reply

  • Simon Whild (10/22/2005 6:54:00 AM)

    A poem showing great depth of perception. I feel much the same myself even though I'm not (yet) a parent. (Report) Reply

  • Mary Nagy (8/31/2005 11:33:00 AM)

    This definately makes you wonder...I feel horrible for the world kids of today are growing up in. Especially the violence that is around them everyday...there's no avoiding it. I think this steals their innocence aways quicker than anything. Reality is harsh, no doubt about it. Very thoughtful poem Ernestine (Mary) :)
    I am enjoying your work very much. Sincerely, Mary (Report) Reply

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