Little children have come to play,
Go and tell them that they may stay;
Go and welcome them with a smile
To a place they may play a while.
Little children have come to play;
Make a gift of a pleasant day.
Sun comes up and goes down again -
Give them shelter from wind and rain,
From the flurry of rushing by,
From the frown of a winter sky,
From the cry that there is no time,
From the notion that dream's a crime.
Little children have come to play
Knowing they won't be turned away.
There's a child within every soul -
Welcome him when he comes to call.
This adorable painting is called "Bubbles: Cottage Scene With Children At Play", by James Dawson Watson.
The poem above was written as I watched my girls play with their little friends, in contented simplicity, for hours. Nothing was required of me but to open the door, step back, smile, and sit in a quiet corner where I could observe without interrupting. Tears of gratitude filled my eyes over and over, for the time which, if not remembered explicitly in years to come, is laying a foundation to be cherished always.