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Sunday Scribblings #123: A Poetic Salute to Stevenson

November 13th happens to be Robert Louis Stevenson’s birthday, so today I attempt, in my way, to write a poetic salute to Stevenson, and invite you to join in as well. Read on for how I plan to do so. Hint: today, it is more about his poems than any specific poetic form.

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Notepad and a pen over it with a cup of coffee next to it. words read Sunday Scribblings, and this is for Sunday Scribblings #123: A Poetic Salute to Stevenson

Poetic Sundays: A Poetic Salute to Robert Louis Stevenson (R. L. S)

Robert Louis Stevenson is best known for Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, as well as his novels, Kidnapped and Treasure Island. Besides many other novels and stories, he has also written many poems, his most famous collection being A Child’s Garden of Verses. On the occasion of his birthday, my Poetic Sunday is a poetic salute to him.

The Poetic Salute to Stevenson: A Quick How To

The rules are simple! Pick a poem and follow its rhythm and rhyme! Here are a few things that might help you get started, and help you along the way.

  • Choose any poem by Robert Louis Stevenson that appeals to you. My example(s) is from his ‘Child’s Garden of Verses’. You can read these poems online at Project Gutenberg.
  • Say, like me, you pick a poem from the garden of verses. In that case, let us write the poem from the viewpoint of a child.
  • Next, look at the rhyme scheme and meter (or at the least, the syllabic count) in the selected poem. Make a note of them, and if possible, the meter as well. Many of the poems seem to use iambic tetrameter (where tetrameter is used)
  • Follow the rhyme scheme and syllabic count as you write the poem. As for the number of lines, it is up to you. This will depend on the R.L.S. poem you pick, you might see that some of his poems are short (just four lines) while others run longer (many stanzas of three to uneven lengths). If you can, have it similar to the poem to make it a proper salute to the poet. As for myself, I picked a shorter one today!
  • You are done, and your poetic salute to Stevenson is ready!

My Step-by-Step Towards My Poetic Salute to Stevenson

Choosing the poem(s)

My two picks by Stevenson

At the Seaside
WHEN I was down beside the sea
A wooden spade they gave to me
To dig the sandy shore.
My holes were empty like a cup,
In every hole the sea came up,
Till it could come no more
~ R.L.S

THE rain is raining all around,
It falls on field and tree,
It rains on the umbrellas here,
And on the ships at sea.
~ R.L.S

Rhyme Scheme and Meter/Syllabic Count

At the Seaside is a poem made up of two tercets (three-line stanzas or can run together as one six-line poem). It has a rhyme scheme of aabccb and syllabic count of 8/8/6/8/8/6

Rain is a quatrain – a poem of 4 lines with rhyme scheme of xaxa and syllabic count of 8/6/8/6

My Attempts at a Poetic Salute to Stevenson

In Search of Treats
I climbed the mango tree today
With my sis Lei and friend Murray
We hoped to find the best –
I mean, the sweetest mangoes there.
But what we found was just thin air!
Squirrels – are indeed pests!

~ Vidya Tiru @ LadyInReadWrites

The birds are singing joyful songs.
I hear them in the trees.
They wake me up in the morning,
And chirp goodnight to me
~ Vidya Tiru @ LadyInReadWrites


On My Blog And the Homefront

This past week’s posts.. I realized I managed to post one everyday!

As far as the home-front, just a regular week, though it was for raining in the real sense of the word, for the very first time this year…and then has gotten very cold for the bay area so we are trying to cope with the sudden drop in temperatures.


On My Blog and On the Homefront

Hoping to post something different this coming week, a couple of posts long in the planning but never made it to the front. And at home, not much different though looking forward to the following week.


Literary Celebrations (close-to-it also!)

  • Literary birthdays this week include: Astrid Lindgren and Gary Provost on the 14th of November;  Marianne Moore on 15th Nov; Chinua Achebe on Nov 16th; Christopher Paolini on the 17th of November; Maggie Stiefvater and Margaret Atwood on Nov 18th(!); Ruta Sepetys on Nov 19th; Alistair Cooke and Nadine Gordimer on the 20th
  • John Riddle of Delaware started I Love to Write Day – to be celebrated annually on November 15
  • World Philosophy Day is observed annually on the third Thursday of November, so this year, it is on the 17th.
  • Future Teachers of America Day, celebrated annually on November 20, is made to celebrate just how great teachers are. 

Foodie Celebrations

Other Celebrations and Observations

Related Books and Reads

Suggestions related to various aspects of today’s blog

Wrapped Up: My Sunday Scribblings

So dear reader, you have reached the end of this Sunday Scribblings! As always, I welcome your thoughts, comments, and suggestions about this post. Will you be attempting to write a poetic salute to Stevenson? And, of course, do let me know if you plan to celebrate any of these mentioned celebrations this coming week/month?

Linking this to the Sunday Post over at the Caffeinated Reviewer and the Sunday Salon.

Poetic Sundays: A Poetic Salute to Robert Louis Stevenson (R. L. S)

13 thoughts on “Sunday Scribblings #123: A Poetic Salute to Stevenson

  1. “How do you like to go up in a swing, up in the air so blue?…” I can still hear my mother reading “The Swing” poem from the “A Child’s Garden of Verses” book by Robert Louis Stevenson. I inherited this classic 1929 edition from her and keep it in a special spot on my bookcase. It was Stevenson’s “The Swing” poem that inspired me to write my first book “High in the Sky” which I was able to publish and read to my mother just before she passed.

  2. My school was named after Robert Louis Stevenson so I spent more time than many looking at his life and his work. He fascinates me, and I’d love to know more about him. He has a beautiful childlike quality of looking out on the world.

    I plan to read his nonfiction book next year about his walk through the mountains in Europe with a donkey.

  3. My attention was caught reading and comprehending the poem At the Seaside. Quite interesting to read more poems and let one’s creativity work to interpret what the poem tries to deliver to its audience.

  4. Out of the two you picked I really like “At the Seaside”, I also like “Birdsong”. However they are all quite lovely & enjoyable.

  5. lovely poems! and the theme So takes me back. I loved treasure island when I was little, especially the odd cartoon with real water and some real-life actors featured.

  6. I never read any of Robert Louis Stevenson’s poems- but Treasure Island, Kidnapped, and Dr. Jeckyl and Mr. Hyde were books I read when I was 8- and I think again when I was 10. (These books came as part of a series of kids books that were delivered every month.)
    Thanks for rekindling the memories.

  7. I got to say, I’m not really good at keeping the rhythm haha. I tried with my brother because he loves poems. And it wasn’t good. I will need to follow the things you mentioned. I like the upcoming to make readers for what’s coming. Would love to read your next week post.

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