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Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894)

To Any Reader


              1As from the house your mother sees
              2You playing round the garden trees,
              3So you may see, if you will look
              4Through the windows of this book,
              5Another child, far, far away,
              6And in another garden, play.
              7But do not think you can at all,
              8By knocking on the window, call
              9That child to hear you. He intent
            10Is all on his play-business bent.
            11He does not hear; he will not look,
            12Nor yet be lured out of this book.
            13For, long ago, the truth to say,
            14He has grown up and gone away,
            15And it is but a child of air
            16That lingers in the garden there.


Online text copyright © 2003, Ian Lancashire for the Department of English, University of Toronto.
Published by the Web Development Group, Information Technology Services, University of Toronto Libraries.

Original text: Robert Louis Stevenson, "A Child's Garden of Verses: Envoys VI," Ballads and Other Poems of Robert Louis Stevenson: A Child's Garden of Verses; Underwoods; Ballads (New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1900): 87. end/S749/A155/190- Fisher Rare Book Library
First publication date: 1885
RPO poem editor: Ian Lancashire
RP edition: RPO 1996-2000.
Recent editing: 2:2001/12/6

Composition date: 1885
Form: couplets


Other poems by Robert Louis Stevenson