Tag Archives: Thomas Eakins

Block City

Baby at Play. Thomas Eakins. 1876.


Block City

Robert Louis Stevenson, 1913


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 mountains 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 the 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:

Hak to the song of the sailor on board!

And see on the steps of my palace the kings

Coming and going with presents and things!


Now I have done with it, down let it go!

All in a moment the town is laid low.

Block upon block lying scattered and free,

What is there left of my town by the sea?


Yet as I saw it, I see it again,

The kirk and the palace, the ships and the men,

And as long as I live and where’er I may be,

I’ll always remember my town by the sea.