Authors' Farewells

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SonOfTheExiles
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Post by SonOfTheExiles » November 7th, 2015, 2:39 pm

Has a collection ever been made of authors' farewells to their public?

A poem Henry Lawson wrote when he was deathly ill in hospital and thought he was about to die ... he survived a little bit longer ... brought this to mind.
http://www.poetrylibrary.edu.au/poets/lawson-henry/the-last-review-0108075

I was going to save this one till I ran out of his other material (somewhere round the year 2050, I reckon!), but I wondered whether there might be some sort of scope for a collection.

Regards,
Son of the Exiles
"Sorry, my tongue got in the way of my eye-tooth, and I couldn't see what I was saying..."
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annise
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Post by annise » November 7th, 2015, 2:52 pm

There's no collection - no reason you couldn' start 1 though, Do you think there would be enough around ? . I can think of Tennyson's "crossing the bar" and Stevenson's "Requiem" but they are more a "wish list" than "last words" ?

Anne
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SonOfTheExiles
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Post by SonOfTheExiles » November 7th, 2015, 11:57 pm

Hmm, you may have a point there. Not everyone gets advance notice, lest of all bohemian poets. I guess that's where the litany's reference to "dying suddenly and unprepared" comes in.

I think I'll leave this forum topic here for a while. If other suggestions for inclusion show up, then I'll reckon I'll kick off a collection under my own (oh, my goodness!) aegis. If the topic languishes instead, well, then I'll look to include it, as stated, in 2050, or when some other suitable venue arises.

At any rate, thanks muchly for your help, Annise! :D

SOTE
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Newgatenovelist
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Post by Newgatenovelist » November 8th, 2015, 1:15 am

There is Kipling's 'The Appeal', but that wasn't published until 1939:

http://www.kiplingsociety.co.uk/rg_appeal1.htm

commonsparrow3
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Post by commonsparrow3 » November 8th, 2015, 2:12 pm

Ben Franklin wrote this epitaph for himself when he was still a young man --

"The Body of B. Franklin, Printer; like the Cover of an old Book, Its Contents torn out, And stript of its Lettering and Gilding, Lies here, Food for Worms. But the Work shall not be wholly lost; For it will, as he believ'd, appear once more, In a new & more perfect Edition, Corrected and amended By the Author."

When he died, all they actually ended up putting on his tombstone was his name. Too bad, because it's a delightful epitaph.

Algy Pug
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Post by Algy Pug » November 8th, 2015, 4:38 pm

James Elroy Flecker (who did die young) wrote a number of epitaph style verses. The most famous is probably "To a Poet a Thousand Years Hence", the first and last stanzas of which are:

I who am dead a thousand years,
And wrote this sweet archaic song,
Send you my words for messengers
The way I shall not pass along.

Since I can never see your face,
And never shake you by the hand,
I send my soul through time and space
To greet you. You will understand.

Famous quote from Lytton Strachey, as he lay dying:
"If this is death, I don't think much of it."

Cheers
Algy Pug

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