And what can be the use of him is more than I can see.
He is very, very like me from the heels up to the head;
And I see him jump before me, when I jump into my bed.
The funniest thing about him is the way he likes to grow—
Not at all like proper children, which is always very slow;
For he sometimes shoots up taller like an India-rubber ball,
And he sometimes gets so little that there’s none of him at all.
He hasn’t got a notion of how children ought to play,
And can only make a fool of me in every sort of way.
He stays so close beside me, he’s a coward you can see;
I’d think shame to stick to nursie as that shadow sticks to me!
One morning, very early, before the sun was up,
I rose and found the shining dew on every buttercup;
But my lazy little shadow, like an arrant sleepy-head,
Had stayed at home behind me and was fast asleep in bed.
---------------------Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894)
I took this picture a number of months ago and it's been hanging out in draft form since then. I'm not sure even why I wrote it except I know that as I did my walk that day and watched my shadow move and change, these lines kept running through my head.
Today is the birthday of Robert Louis Stevenson and I've loved his poetry since childhood. Most of the small, early poems I read and loved were from my Childcraft; Vol. 1 "Poems of Early Childhood".
I confess to being quite immature and my childhood may have lasted longer than many! I have my Mother to thank for preschool reading material and trips to library.