When my mother died I was very young,
And my father sold me while yet my tongue,
Could scarcely cry weep weep weep weep,
So your chimneys I sweep and in soot I sleep.
There’s little Tom Dacre, who cried when his head
That curled like a lamb’s back was shav'd, so I said.
Hush Tom never mind it, for when your head's bare,
You know that the soot cannot spoil your white hair
And so he was quiet and that very night.
As Tom was a sleeping he had such a sight
That thousands of sweepers Dick, Joe, Ned, and Jack
Were all of them lock'd up in coffins of black,
And by came an Angel who had a bright key
And he open'd the coffins and set them all free.
Then down a green plain leaping, laughing, they run
And wash in a river and shine in the Sun.
Then naked and white, all their bags left behind.
They rise upon clouds, and sport in the wind.
And the Angel told Tom, if he'd be a good boy,
He'd have God for his father and never want joy.
And so Tom awoke and we rose in the dark
And got with our bags and our brushes to work.
Tho' the morning was cold, Tom was happy and warm
So if all do their duty, they need not fear harm.
(“The Chimney Sweeper” by William Blake)