Incline Press 36 Bow Street Oldham OL1 1SJ England
Telephone (011-44) 0161 627 1966

Hand-made books for the collector who reads and the reader who collects

wood engravings

The Long Journey
poems selected from A Child's Garden of Verses, Songs of Travel, Ballads and Underwoods
with wood engravings by Robin Mackenzie

Graham Moss on Robert Louis Stevenson:

I met Robert Louis Stevenson three times when I was a boy. 

The first time I was nearly six years old. During a prolonged hospital stay, A Child's Garden of Verses was read to me, the book kept at home awaiting my return. From that time, I retain a familiarity, even a love of those poems. The next time I was nine, and taken to the first stage play that I can remember experiencing. Treasure Island captivated me on that dark and cold night. The book was my Christmas gift that year. Five years later, armed with the winning book token from a school activity of which I have no recollection, I purchased an edition of The Strange Case of Dr Jeykell and Mr Hyde. Over fifty years later, I still remember the gilt edges, the rexine cover with rounded corners, the turn of the India-paper pages.

Stevenson remains an unforgettable author, and I have never lost track of him. More recently, in around 1996, I made his acquaintance again, through the singing of bass-baritone Bryn Terfel. Among the tracks of his Deutsche Grammophon CD The Vagabond, is the suite of nine Stevenson poems set to music by Ralph Vaughan Williams. These songs, which often accompany the song of the press here at Incline,  form the core of this book, with a few others chosen to complete the narrative of the long journey.

flying bird

This book has been turning around my head for the past twenty years,  but I knew these poems needed illustration, and I was content to wait until the right ones came along. Last year they did in the form of seven wood engravings, the first book work of print maker Robin Mackenzie. They capture and hold fast the tenor of the poems with a strong sense of black line, enhanced by some tint and a judicious use of colour. We are pleased with his work and hope to see him at Incline again.

The Long Journey was printed on 160 gsm Zerkall paper, a special making arranged by John Purcell Paper.  The typeface is the elegant 16-point Lutetia, cast in the workshop of Harold Berliner in the year 2000. Bound, the book is slightly larger than 11 by 7 inches, in a hardback binding with a burgundy cloth spine and on the sides an original Curwen Press decorated paper designed by Sarah Nechamkin and dating from around 1949. The edition is limited to 180 numbered copies. Each copy is signed by the wood engraver and the binder.

Forty special copies come in a slipcase with a matching portfolio of black prints of the wood engravings. As usual, the book is also available unbound so that you may bind it yourself, or commission a special binding. Ask us about our favourite design binders if you would like to consider this option.


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Last updated 23 November 2014. Wood engravings copyright Robin Mackenzie and may not be reprinted without his permission.