When twilight to the window creeps
And starlight, here and there,
Is seen against the night-time’s dark
That spreads now up the stair;
‘Tis at that time when children rest
All snuggled in their beds
That shadows come to dance among
The stars and maple-heads.
In day’s cold light the shadows hide
About the children’s feet
Behind them flowing, spreading out
At object’s edge to meet.
Till Sun goes down her power’s strong
The shadows stayed confined
But when light dies o’er the Earth
They then free roam can find.
In darkness where they make their home,
Where stars are far above
There are trees to climb and lily-pads
To play in night they love.
The shadows skip about, and twirl
Throughout the night they play
And seem to mimic children, whom
They mimic in the day.
When red light o’er the whole world spreads
And the children rise from sleep
The shadows off the world do slip
And to their masters creep.
But days are brief and days are long
Though each one is the same;
When they die, shadows fly away
And take back up their merry game.