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The child arranges tiny blocks
Of painted wood—red barns, white homes—
Around a green he has imagined
Atop an antique linen chest,

Where cattle graze among the rocks
Below the lighthouse. The ocean foams
And falls; seagulls surf the wind,
A rug to east, a lamp to west.

We watch the islands fade in fog;
We hear sharp ticks of rain on glass.
We squint to see inside a space
That’s tiny as a pair of dice,

And glimpse inside a family, a dog,
A lamp and rug; and just like us
They peer into their own toy house,
Lit up and translucent as ice.

They have a song for those inside,
Whom we can’t see, and so they sing
Some lines we’ll never hear. Outside,
The tide rises, intent, listening.