By John Fuller b. 1937 John Fuller
Sleep little baby, clean as a nut,
Your fingers uncurl and your eyes are shut.   
Your life was ours, which is with you.   
Go on your journey. We go too.

The bat is flying round the house
Like an umbrella turned into a mouse.
The moon is astonished and so are the sheep:   
Their bells have come to send you to sleep.

Oh be our rest, our hopeful start.
Turn your head to my beating heart.   
Sleep little baby, clean as a nut,
Your fingers uncurl and your eyes are shut.

John Fuller, “Lullaby” from Collected Poems, published by Chatto & Windus. Used by permission of The Random House Group Limited,

Source: Collected Poems (1996)

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Poet John Fuller b. 1937


Subjects Birth & Birthdays, Living, Infancy

Occasions Birth

Poetic Terms Rhymed Stanza, Couplet

 John  Fuller


A prolific poet, novelist, children’s writer, critic, and editor, John Fuller has written or edited nearly 50 books, including more than a dozen collections of poetry. Fuller was born in Kent, England, and his father was the poet Roy Fuller. John Fuller was mentored by W.H. Auden and also influenced by Eliot, Graves, and Stevens. His poetry displays a virtuosic ease within the constraints of formal, metered verse; it is a poetry . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Birth & Birthdays, Living, Infancy


Poetic Terms Rhymed Stanza, Couplet

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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