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Not Yet my Soul

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By: (1850-1894)

15 recordings of Not Yet my Soul by Robert Louis Stevenson. This was the Fortnightly Poetry project for May 19, 2013.

Robert Louis Balfour Stevenson (13 November 1850 – 3 December 1894) was a Scottish novelist, poet, essayist, and travel writer. His most famous works are Treasure Island, Kidnapped, and Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde.
The following poem comes from his collection entitled Underwoods, first published in 1887.

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Underwoods by Robert Louis Stevenson. Scanned and proofed by David Price, email


Of all my verse, like not a single line; But like my title, for it is not mine. That title from a better man I stole: Ah, how much better, had I stol'n the whole!


THERE are men and classes of men that stand above the common herd: the soldier, the sailor and the shepherd not unfrequently; the artist rarely; rarely still, the clergyman; the physician almost as a rule. He is the flower (such as it is) of our civilisation; and when that stage of man is done with, and only remembered to be marvelled at in history, he will be thought to have shared as little as any in the defects of the period, and most notably exhibited the virtues of the race. Generosity he has, such as is possible to those who practise an art, never to those who drive a trade; discretion, tested by a hundred secrets; tact, tried in a thousand embarrassments; and what are more important, Heraclean cheerfulness and courage... Continue reading book >>

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