[June 25th 2018]
This poem was first published in July 1891 in the Contemporary Review within the text of "The Finest Story in the World" . It is listed in ORG as No. 498.
It is collected in
Peter Havholm writes in his notes on "The Finest Story in the World" :
The narrator meets a young bank clerk, Charlie Mears, who longs to be a writer and seeks his advice. Charlie seems a commonplace and not particularly imaginative young man, but - partly written and partly in conversation - he produces strangely powerful accounts of sea voyages in the ancient world, by a Viking adventurer on a voyage to America, and by a Greek galley slave. He gives vivid details, including fragments of script which turn out to be corrupt Greek. The narrator becomes convinced that - rather than creating these stories - Charlie is remembering past lives, and that it is such recollections that feed the mysterious processes of creative 'imagination'.
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