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Requiem
by
Robert Louis Stevenson


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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 long'd to be;  
Home is the sailor, home from sea,   
And the hunter home from the hill

 

This poem is in the public domain.

 

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Scottish writer Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894) is, for many of us, the first poet to whom we were introduced, through his wonderful book, A Child’s Garden of Verses. Though he came from a family of engineers and it was expected he would follow suit, Robert wrote stories even as a child; no one was really surprised when, three years into his engineering studies at the University of Edinburgh, he abandoned them to study writing. Always an avid traveller, despite lifelong poor health, Robert spent much of his life looking for a place to live that offered some respite from his illnesses. A prolific writer of poetry, fiction (Kidnapped, Treasure Island, and The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hide are his best known), travelogues, and political essays, he is properly revered today as a major literary figure, although in the early twentieth century, he was temporarily dismissed and disdained as "a children's author." Ultimately, Robert ending up living in Samoa, happy and productive until a stroke abruptly ended his life at the age of 44. 

 


Post New Comment:
KevinArnold:
Such brevity and subtle craft. What a courageous way to face death, simply: "Glad did I live and gladly die,"
Posted 12/03/2015 09:32 AM


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