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    Animated “Requiem” from Robert Louis Stevenson

    I sincerely hope Mairiuna that you are feeling better and wish you a very prompt recovery from this terrible flu that you are both, Jean-Claude and yourself, dealing with. :-(

    To uplift your spirits, let me show you my latest online discovery. It’s about “animated” movies of great poets, a very creative form of virtual animation that I happen to stumble upon this morning.

    As PoetryAnimations You Tube Channel describes it, these awesome videos “reincarnates, through the wonders of computer animation, literary and historical figures reading their best loved poems”.  To give them a greater feel of “reality”, these videos are presented in old scratchy movies style. 

    Wow…amazing!

    From the several hundreds of videos available, I selected one featuring Scottish author Robert Louis Stevenson narrating an excerpt of his poem : ” A Requiem”..

    Requiem

    Although he wrote many stories which are set in the South Seas, Robert Louis Stevenson’s native land remained in his thoughts.

    He had completed The Master of Ballantrae during his cruise, and once settled at Vailima he began work on a new novel. Weir of Hermiston is claimed by many to be his finest work, although it was never completed.

    Sudden death
    One evening in December 1894, Stevenson died very suddenly. He had defied his weak lungs for over 40 years, but in the end it was a brain haemorrhage which killed him. The final words of his unfinished novel were strangely appropriate:

    ‘It had seemed unprovoked, a wilful convulsion of brute nature …’

    Home is the sailor
    Fourteen years earlier, when he was very ill in California, Stevenson had composed his own epitaph:

    ‘Under the wide and starry sky,
    Dig the grave and let me lie.
    Glad did I live and gladly die,
    And I laid me down with a will.

    This be the verse you grave for me:
    Here he lies where he longed to be;
    Home is the sailor, home from sea,
    And the hunter home from the hill.’

    Source: National Library of Scotland

    Isn’t this cool? To all our readers: do not hesitate to share your thoughts by posting a comment in the field provided below.

    Since it would be hard for me to sign off without inserting a touch of thematic philately ;-) … let me showcase this beautiful first day of issue topical postmark stamped on the Official First Day cover issued in 1969 by Samoa to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the death (1894) of Robert Louis Stevenson. 

    The cachet depicts his grave on Mount Vala while the stamp commemorates Long John Silver from the novel Treasure Island.

    Samoa First Day Cover Robert Louis Stevenson - Kidnapped

    First Day Cover - Samoa - Robert Louis Stevenson's Grave cachet and Kidnapped stamp

    Stevenson, Robert Louis (1850-1894) – Scottish novelist, poet, and essayist, best known for his adventure stories. Stevenson was a sickly man (he died of tuberculosis) who nevertheless led an adventurous life.

    He spent his last five years on the island of Samoa as a planter and chief of the natives. Requiem (1879) – 15 years before he died — ill, distraught and close to death — Stevenson penned this, his own epitaph. This poem is engraved in his tombstone in Samoa.

    Robert Louis Stevenson's Tomb in Samoa Wikipedia

    Robert Louis Stevenson's Tomb in Samoa Wikipedia

    Hope you enjoyed!

    Take care and talk soon.

    Janice

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