THE MASSACRE OF THE INNOCENTS
William Jay Smith (1946)
Because I believe in the community of little children
Because I have suffered such little children to be slain:
I have gazed upon the sunlight, dazed, bewildered,
As is a child by nothing more than rain.
Not until I can no longer climb,
Until my life becomes the tallest tree,
And every limb of it a lint of shame,
Shall I look out in time, in time to see
Again those who were so small they could but die
Who had only their vast innocence to give:
That I may tell them, pointing down to the sky,
How beautiful it was to live.