Sunday, June 24, 2012

Higher and higher, Long Island Poem for end of school Sunday

Front page of The Roosevelt Bears
We are back to children poetry this week.

The rhymed adventures of the Roosevelt Bears by Seymour Eaton were first published in 1906. The Roosevelt Bears, TEDDY-B (black vs bad) and TEDDY-G (gray vs good), traveled through New York, Chicago, Boston, North Pole; visited a school, worked on a farm, enjoyed a county fair, and let their imagination loose during a balloon ride. Their antics, richly illustrated by V. Floyd Campbell, added a lighter note to children's summer reading lists at the turn of the last century.

The Roosevelt Bears, Their Travels and Adventures
Seymour Eaton

The Roosevelt Bears in a Balloon

      The balloon sailed up above the crowds
      And the county fair and beyond the clouds.
      The sky around was clear and blue,
      The earth below was lost to view.
No sound was heard: the air was still;
The space about was too big to fill
With sound or house or town or hill.
    Distance was gone and direction too;
        The bears had nothing left to do;
            There wasn't a thing to fasten to.
                The sun alone and dazzling bright
                    Seemed to be laughing at their plight.

The first to speak was TEDDY-G;
  "The earth has dropped somewhere," said he;
    "Fell through those clouds: I saw it go;
      And where it's gone I want to know."
        "Don't ask me," said TEDDY-B,
        I never learned astronomy;
        We're off for good: dear knows how far:
        The sky will have another star.
        I suppose we'll have an orbit soon
        And revolve around the sun and moon
        And have day and night and spring and fall,
        And roll about like a rubber ball;
        Or play with Jupiter or the planet Mars,
        Or ride on comets through the stars.
        Scholars will look through telescopes,
        And tell our weight and count these ropes,
And measure time back to our birth,
And say we're peopled like the earth."


The Roosevelt Bears, Their Travels and Adventures by Seymour Eaton.
First published 1906. Reprinted after Dover Publications, Inc.
In public domain.

Previous Long Island Poem for Sunday - "Quintessential moment with my father", Long Island Poem for Father's Day Sunday

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