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Block City
Robert Louis Stevenson


What are you able to build with your blocks?
Castles and palaces, temples and docks.
Rain may keep raining, and others go roam,
But I can be happy and building at home.

Let the sofa be mountains, the carpet be sea,
There I'll establish a city for me:
A kirk and a mill and a palace beside,
And a harbor as well where my vessels may ride.

Great is the palace with pillar and wall,
A sort of a tower on top of it all,
And steps coming down in an orderly way
To where my toy vessels lie safe in the bay.

This one is sailing and that one is moored:
Hark to the song of the sailors on board!
And see on the steps of my palace, the kings
Coming and going with presents and things!

This poem is in the public domain.



Robert Louis Stevenson (1850 - 1894) was a Scottish author whose gift for writing ranged from poetry and fiction to travelogues and essays. For many of us, Stevenson was perhaps the first poet to whom we were introduced, through his wonderful book, A Child's Garden of Verses. We may have encountered him again in our youth, in the exotic pages of Kidnapped, Treasure Island, and The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Always sickly, Robert left his beloved Scotland and spent the latter half of his life in the kinder climate of the South Sea islands. He died much too young and is buried in Samoa, where his tomb is engraved with lines from his poem, "Requiem:" "Under the wide and starry sky/dig the grave and let me lie."





Post New Comment:
Just delightful. What do we build with our traits and duties. Are they worthy of kings?
Posted 07/10/2014 09:56 PM
I am not really familiar with his rhyming work. I might buy the book.
Posted 07/10/2014 11:42 AM
His rhymes are a pleasure.
Posted 07/10/2014 09:24 AM
I loved my copy of A Child's Garden of Verse and encourage all my friends who are having children, or grandchildren, to feed poetry to the young.
Posted 07/10/2014 08:32 AM
Ross Kightly:
Lovely to see something from one of my favourite writers! He also produced what I thought in my school days was the second scariest story ever written... 'The Bottle Imp.'
Posted 07/10/2014 02:01 AM

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