What is the theme of the poem "The Little Dancers" by Robert Laurence Binyon? 

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mitchrich4199 | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Associate Educator

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The theme to "The Little Dancers" might be that each person can make their own happiness, no matter what their circumstances. In the poem, the two children are standing in an alley, at night, outside of a tavern. Binyon sets a very lonely tone in the first lines: "Lonely, save for a few faint stars, the sky/ Dreams; and lonely, below, the little street/ into its gloom retires, secluded and shy." The only light that shines on the children is from the high windows of the tavern. This makes us question why these children would be out in an alley at night. The answer might be that their father, mother or both parents are in the tavern. It seems they are too young to understand that this is wrong, as they "dance sedately...Their eyes shining, grave with a perfect pleasure."

Further, we can tell that they are poor by their clothing, which is described as "tattered frocks." Going along with the idea described above, their parents might be spending their money - the money that could be used on new clothing for the children - on drink. This would help explain that the children are used to this activity and that they are making their own fun, as described above.

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