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Charles E. Burchfield (1893-1967), 1904 The Happy Child, Undated; pencil on paper, 11 3/4 x 13 inches; Gift of Harriet and Mortimer Spiller, 1976

Charles E. Burchfield (1893-1967), 1904 The Happy Child, Undated; pencil on paper, 11 3/4 x 13 inches; Gift of Harriet and Mortimer Spiller, 1976

1904
The Happy Child

He walks along through the woods and meadows, past hepaticas and spring-beauties; past blue-gray beeches, rough-barked maples and under the soft dark gloom of pine-trees, God leading him by the hand.
He listens to the songs of spring birds, the soft roar of wind in the tree-tops; the faint rustle of a tiny whirlwind scattering spiraling leaves down some dark hollow. Warm sunlight reflects upward from last autumn’s bleached out leaves into his rapt eager face.
He is a happy child, an innocent child of God.
Warm sunlight reflected up from the earth on a day in March when maple-sap is running freely – the smell of hepaticas; their soft downy birds pushing up through the lead-mold.
Decayed hemlock needles, little hemlock cones – the smell of the earth – the soft sigh of a wood through hemlock branches, the glint of sunlight on hemlock needles.
The child rejoices in the little hemlock world.