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Short poem

e. e. cummings (1894-1962)

in Just-

              1in Just-
              2spring       when the world is mud-
              3luscious the little
              4lame baloonman

              5whistles       far       and wee

              6and eddieandbill come
              7running from marbles and
              8piracies and it's

            10when the world is puddle-wonderful

            11the queer
            12old baloonman whistles
            13far       and         wee
            14and bettyandisbel come dancing

            15from hop-scotch and jump-rope and


            19        the

            20                goat-footed

            21baloonMan       whistles


1] Later Cummings wrote that the baloonman expressed "a hint of youth and Norton's Woods" and that the poem was about spring in Cambridge, Mass. (Selected Letters of E. E. Cummings, ed. F. W. Dupee and George Stade (New York: Harcourt, Brace, & World, 1969): 70-71, 233.

4] baloonman: balloonman (1922 ms)

6] eddieandbill: eddyandbill (1920 Dial).

12] baloonman: balloonman (1922 ms).

21] baloonman: balloonman (1922 ms).

Online text copyright © 2003, Ian Lancashire for the Department of English, University of Toronto.
Published by the Web Development Group, Information Technology Services, University of Toronto Libraries.

Original text: "Tulips," "CHANSONS INNOCENTES I," Tulips and Chimneys (New York: Thomas Seltzer, 1923): 40-41. Firmage A3a Berg Collection, New York Public Library.
First publication date: May 1920
Publication date note: Dial 68.5 (May 1920): 580.
RPO poem editor: Ian Lancashire
RP edition: RPO 2000.
Recent editing: 2:2001/12/12

Form: free
Rhyme: unrhyming
Form note: variable-length lines and stanzas

Other poems by e. e. cummings