A good way to start thinking about a poem is to read it a couple of times and make sure you are clear about what all the words mean. This is especially important with poems that are over 200 years old like this one. Next, ask yourself what the poem's subject matter is? A poem's subject is not the same as its meaning. Poems communicate their meaning in a number of different ways - not just through the everyday meaning of the words. But asking yourself what is this poem about? is a good place to start.
Listen to the poem and watch the slideshow
'Father father, where are you going?Oh do not walk so fast!Speak father, speak to your little boyOr else I shall be lost.'The night was dark, no father was there,The child was wet with dew;The mire was deep, and the child did weep,And away the vapour flew.