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…his spiritual pleasures had nothing to do with turning them over or justifying them in words. Words were with him a mere accomplishment, like dancing. When he was by himself, his pleasures were almost vegetable. He would slip into the woods towards Acheres, and sit in the mouth of a cave among grey birches. His soul stared straight out of his eyes; he did not move or think; sunlight, thin shadows moving in the wind, the edge of firs against the sky, occupied and bound his faculties. He was pure unity, a spirit wholly abstracted. A single mood filled him, to which all the objects of sense contributed, as the colours of the spectrum merge and disappear in white light.

(The Treasure of Franchard, Robert Louis Stevenson, 1887 )

 

Stevenson was a prolific writer with a poetic gift of description, who deserves to be better known than for his romping Treasure Island or the horror classic Jekyll and Hyde. 

…his spiritu…

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