The following poem was shared with us by Mark L. Hamburg at firstname.lastname@example.org,
one of the web's largest philatelic e-mail lists:
My worldly wealth I hoard in albums three,
My life collection of rare postage stamps;
My room is cold and bare as you can see,
My coat is old and shabby as a tramp's;
Yet more to me than balances in banks,
My albums three are worth a million francs.
I keep them in that box beside my bed,
For who would dream such treasures it could hold;
But every day I take them out and spread
Each page, to gloat like miser o'er his gold.
Dearer to me than could be child or wife,
I would defend them with my very life.
They are my very life, for every night
Over my catalogues I pore and pore;
I recognize rare items with delight,
Nothing I read but philatelic lore;
And when some specimen of choice I buy,
In the world there's none more glad than I.
Behold my gem, my British Penny Black;
To pay it's price I starved myself a year;
And many a night my dinner I would lack,
But when I bought it, oh, what radiant cheer!
Hitler made war that day, I did not care,
So long as my collection he would spare.
Look - my triangular Cape of Good Hope.
To purchase it I had to sell my car.
Now in my pocket for some cents I grope
To pay my bus fare when home is far,
And I am cold and hungry and footsore,
In haste to add some beauty to my store.
This very day, ah, what a joy was mine,
When in a dingy dealer's shop I found
This franc vermilion, eighteen forty-nine...
How painfully my heart began to pound!
(It's weak they say), I paid the modest price
And tremblingly I vanished in a trice.
But oh, my dream is that someday I'll glow,
When I might discover a Mauritius blue,
Poking among the stamp bins of a show;
Who knows! They say there are but two;
Yet if a third one I should spy,
I think - God help me! I should faint and die...
Poor mister ------, he's cold and dead,
One of those stamp collecting cranks.
His garret held no crust of bread.
But albums worth a million francs.
On them his income he would spend,
By philatelic frenzy driven;
What did it profit in the end...
You can't take stamps to heaven.
by Robert W. Service
ANOTHER GOOD REASON TO BECOME A VIRTUAL
What is a Stamp?
(By Trevor Webster -Acknowledgements to Fish Hoek Philatelic Society)
A true stamp must feel the tongue of the sender moistening its
A stamp must be stuck on a letter
A stamp must experience the dark depths of the post box
A stamp must suffer franking
A stamp must sense the hand of the postman handing the letter to the addressee
A stamp which is not mailed on a letter is no stamp. It has never lived, it is a
It is like a fish who has never swum, a bird which has never flown.
A stamp must have lived as a stamp.
... and, ultimately, it will become a
beautiful virtual stamp ... Ed
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