Harley White

Put Away Childish Things - Poem by Harley White

Put away childish things
yet keep the childlike wonder.
Though dreams be rent asunder
our wishes still have wings.

Put away childish speech
but not the constant queries
that question rooted theories
which reason cannot reach.

Put away childish ken,
though artless ways of seeing
in any age of being
will find a poet's pen.

Put away childish thought
yet not imagination
which sparks our inspiration
beyond what we are taught.

Put away childish things
but follow deepest desires.
Those secret innermost fires
burn brighter as hope sings.

Put away childish whim
yet not delight in playing,
then when the world's dismaying,
our days won't seem so grim.

Put away childish fears.
Nonetheless, through thick and thin
hang on to the child within,
the laughter and the tears,

all the livelong years…

Put away childish things.
While our dusty death is nigh,
the utter self shall not die,
and karmic kismet clings.

Put away childish things,
though then in mirror darkly
we face our image starkly,
plus suffer destined slings.

Put away childish pain
yet not sensations tender
for sunset's golden splendor
or soothing thrum of rain,

therein the simple joys remain…
Nor questing spirit ever lose,
while on the pathway that we choose,
neither from love refrain

which makes a heaven of earth's domain.

Still, throughout, with faith unshaken,
seek enlightenment to waken,
thus the bliss supreme to gain,
plus not to live and die in vain…

Put away childish things
but hold to yearning youthful
to grasp the learning truthful
which timeless wisdom brings.

Put away childish things,
and embrace the peerless state
of illumined grace innate
wherefrom great fortune springs!

Topic(s) of this poem: life and death

Form: Verse

Poet's Notes about The Poem

The following well-known quotation provided the initial literary inspiration for the poem…

"When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things. For now we see in a mirror, darkly, but then face to face."

1 Corinthians 13 ~ The New King James Version (NKJV) translation of the Bible

Further inspiration derived from the teachings and writings of Nichiren Daishōnin, as well as Martin Bradley's interpretative writings about them…

* * * * * * * * *

Painting ~ "A Pageant of Childhood" ~ Thomas Cooper Gotch,1899

Comments about Put Away Childish Things by Harley White

  • (11/11/2018 2:47:00 PM)

    Signposts a path to a more meaningful philosophy of education. As an educator Iv`e developed a growing concern that teaching, controlled and shaped by an obsession with assessment, limits creativity and the pursuit of excellence. Thank you...wl..... (Report) Reply

    (11/11/2018 3:53:00 PM)

    Educators are so crucial in our formative years. I agree with your ideas and thank you for your thoughtful remarks!

    1 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Baquee Billah Ahmed (9/2/2018 5:40:00 AM)

    sweet poem it is................................. (Report) Reply

    Baquee Billah Ahmed (9/2/2018 8:09:00 AM)

    U most welcome mam.....Its was my plesur to read ur poem and comment on it

    Harley White (9/2/2018 8:07:00 AM)

    Thank you for taking the trouble to comment.

  • Aqua Flower (5/6/2018 10:21:00 AM)

    This a skillfully and clevely crafted about childhood and adulthood. There are many childish things we need to let go but as your poem so perfectly expresses, there are things to take hold of and keep, like imagination! ! ! My favorite line: Put away childish thought yet not imagination which sparks our inspiration beyond what we are taught So true is that line and manyother lines throughout this poem! Wonderfully written!

    then when the world's dismaying,
    our days won't seem so grim.
    (Report) Reply

    Harley White (5/6/2018 3:56:00 PM)

    It is gratifying to see that you picked up so completely what I was trying to convey in the poem. I appreciate your comment and response! Thank you!

  • Seamus O Brian (2/25/2018 3:20:00 PM)

    An expansive and skillfully wrought exhortation that bears much wisdom. I am one who quickly abandons rhyming schemes in favor of specificity of thought, so when I come across a writer with your skill who can maintain a theme over an extended piece diction that carries your thought with razor sharp accuracy, I am equal parts awed and envious. Exceptional writing. (Report) Reply

    Harley White (2/25/2018 4:23:00 PM)

    Thanks for your warmhearted comment! Lately I find myself more drawn to rhyme and meter, though it takes me some time to craft my poems. I appreciate that you noticed!

  • Abekah Emmanuel (12/9/2017 5:48:00 AM)

    Indeed Harley caught my attention with this one...very soft and flowing. I like the simple rhyme scheme of 'abba', it makes the poem 'child-friendly'(not childish please) .ha!

    While cautioning us to put childish things away, you also encourage us to learn certain positive traits in childhood. The contrast technique makes the poem interesting and easy to understand. The enjambment also fits the structure and makes your tone a natural one. This is a good work...keep writing!
    (Report) Reply

    Harley White (12/9/2017 9:02:00 AM)

    I see that you have read, analyzed and interpreted my poem with great astuteness. Thank you for taking the time and trouble to offer this perceptive response and encouragement!

  • Bri Edwards (11/26/2017 7:13:00 PM)

    “Put away childish pain
    yet not sensations tender” ………………..yes, grow up! And get adult pain!

    Thanks for the Poet’s Notes! To MyPoemList.

    If I remember, I’ll be tempted to try writing some with your rhyme scheme.

    Your topics: yes, “life and death” just about covers everything. Except things
    which never are alive.

    Bri :)
    (Report) Reply

    Harley White (11/27/2017 7:53:00 AM)

    I see you have revisited this poem. Thank you for your comments.

  • Bri Edwards (11/26/2017 7:13:00 PM)

    some favorite lines:

    Put away childish whim
    yet not delight in playing,
    then when the world's dismaying,
    our days won't seem so grim. .......and yet it is helpful to have some people who will actually try doing something constructive about the dismaying world! but, sure, playing' is easier and it's what i'd usually do, ...........like being on PH. besides i ain't rich, smart, or ambitious enough to help the world much. ;)
    (Report) Reply

  • Bri Edwards (11/26/2017 7:12:00 PM)

    since PH is still being picky about the lengths of comment we can submit, my comments will arrive in sections. (Report) Reply

  • (11/23/2017 11:35:00 PM)

    However much one becomes different with age, every human goes nostalgic when it comes to reminiscing events in one's own childhood. Congratulations for being the PoD. Thanks for sharing a well executed inspiring juicy poem. (Report) Reply

    (11/24/2017 6:43:00 AM)

    I’m so glad you enjoyed the poem, and I appreciate your words of approval!

  • (11/23/2017 10:20:00 PM)

    Harley, this is such an awesome poem! And so timely! There are so many childish people out there today. And they are so selfish. If only they could connect with their child-like nature, they would be so much happier. And physically, much healthier. Many Kudos for this inspirational poem! Truly worthy of Poem Of The Day! Congratulations, Harley! ! (Report) Reply

    Harley White (11/24/2017 6:40:00 AM)

    I totally agree with you about people we observe. And thank you so much for your words of commendation!

  • (11/23/2017 2:56:00 PM)

    WOW! ! ! i'm not a follower of Poems of the Day, but i stumbled on this today, and depart enriched with your words and rhyming. beautifully done! and thanks for the Poet's Notes. i shall have to visit your 'bio', now or later.

    bri :)
    (Report) Reply

    (11/23/2017 3:11:00 PM)

    I really appreciate your enthusiastic comment! I'm glad you happened upon my poem and came around to call, so to speak. Thanks very much for the visit!

  • Edward Kofi Louis (11/23/2017 11:24:00 AM)

    Learning truthful! Thanks for sharing this poem with us. (Report) Reply

    Harley White (11/23/2017 12:23:00 PM)

    I'm pleased that you found my poem meaningful. Thank you!

  • (11/23/2017 10:56:00 AM)

    This is beautifully written on a subject extraordinary about childhood things being childlike vs childish becoming a personality having done things that suffice for childish pride.......Harley......cong. for being selected P.O.D. thanks a lot for sharing (Report) Reply

    Harley White (11/23/2017 12:21:00 PM)

    Comments such as yours make my poetic labors feel worthwhile. Thank you so much!

  • Nudershada Cabanes (11/23/2017 8:51:00 AM)

    Beautiful poem excellently penned. Congratulations on your poem of the day. A delightful read. (Report) Reply

    Harley White (11/23/2017 9:14:00 AM)

    Your approving observations are most encouraging. Thank you so much!

  • Akhtar Jawad (11/23/2017 6:34:00 AM)

    What a great poem! As far as curiosity and learning is concerned their object may be changed but our behavior always remains like that of a child. A wonderful selection as members poem of the day, congrats. (Report) Reply

    Harley White (11/23/2017 7:16:00 AM)

    Thank you so much for your words of praise! Your comment is gratifying indeed...

  • (11/23/2017 6:06:00 AM)

    So many times in our older years we long for the joy we experienced as a child, child like humility, the carefree days, the wonderful path of our imagination, another famous quote: except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter the kingdom of the heavens, Matthew 18: 3 KJV, great poem my friend (Report) Reply

    (11/23/2017 7:13:00 AM)

    Ah, I'm glad that you read this. As always, I am grateful for your great encouragement and support! Thank you so much!

  • Bernard F. Asuncion (11/23/2017 5:08:00 AM)

    Such a brilliant poem, Harley... congrats for being chosen....10+++ (Report) Reply

    Harley White (11/23/2017 7:11:00 AM)

    Thank you, Bernard! I appreciate your encouraging words...

  • Kamiel Choi (11/23/2017 3:52:00 AM)

    Nicely done!
    Put away childish speech
    but not the constant queries
    that question rooted theories
    which reason cannot reach.
    (Report) Reply

    Harley White (11/23/2017 7:09:00 AM)

    I'm pleased that you liked the poem. Yes, that was an important stanza for me, too. Thank you!

  • (11/23/2017 2:34:00 AM)

    a wonderful inspirational poem about growing up and becoming the best you can? .............well written Harley (Report) Reply

    Harley White (11/23/2017 7:07:00 AM)

    Thank you, Tom! I appreciate your remarks...

  • Bharati Nayak (11/23/2017 2:04:00 AM)

    So elaborately expressed in a poetic way the difference between 'childishness ' and 'child like' nature.At some point of time we have to grow up leaving behind our childhood and childhood whims and enter into manhood accepting the responsibilities appropriate to our age But we can still keep alive our imaginative and inquisitive mind, openness to enjoy pure pleasure of life that are so characteristic of a child.
    An amazing poem, thanks for sharing.
    (Report) Reply

    Harley White (11/23/2017 7:04:00 AM)

    I appreciate your careful reading and detailed comment, which makes clear the distinction expressed in my poem. Thank you!

Read all 45 comments »

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Poem Submitted: Saturday, October 7, 2017

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