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Thread: A poem a day

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    Spring
    - Poem by Charles Duke of Orleans


    The year has changed his mantle cold
    Of wind, of rain, of bitter air;
    And he goes clad in cloth of gold,
    Of laughing suns and season fair;
    No bird or beast of wood or wold
    But doth with cry or song declare
    The year lays down his mantle cold.
    All founts, all rivers, seaward rolled,
    The pleasant summer livery wear,
    With silver studs on broidered vair;
    The world puts off its raiment old,
    The year lays down his mantle cold.
    Charles Duke of Orleans
    My father- "Take pride in who you are and where you came from. Life is hard, often fighting is the only option!"
    Ernest Hemingway- “In order to write about life, you must first live it.”
    http://www.lindleypoetry.com/category/a-poem-a-day/

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    All That's Past
    - Poem by Walter de la Mare


    Very old are the woods;
    And the buds that break
    Out of the brier's boughs,
    When March winds wake,
    So old with their beauty are--
    Oh, no man knows
    Through what wild centuries
    Roves back the rose.
    Very old are the brooks;
    And the rills that rise
    Where snow sleeps cold beneath
    The azure skies
    Sing such a history
    Of come and gone,
    Their every drop is as wise
    As Solomon.

    Very old are we men;
    Our dreams are tales
    Told in dim Eden
    By Eve's nightingales;
    We wake and whisper awhile,
    But, the day gone by,
    Silence and sleep like fields
    Of amaranth lie.
    Walter de la Mare

    ************************************************** *********
    Biography of Walter de la Mare
    Walter de la Mare poet

    Sir Walter de la Mare was born in Charlton, Kent, in the south of England, of well-to-do parents. His father, James Edward Delamaere, was an official of the Bank of England. His mother, Lucy Sophia (Browning) Delamare, was related to the poet Robert Browning. He was educated in London at St. Paul's Cathedral Choir School, which he left at age 16. From 1890 to 1908 he worked in London in the accounting department of the Anglo-American Oil Company. His career as a writer started from about 1895 and he continued to publish to the end of his life. His first published story, 'Kismet' (1895), appeared in the Sketch under the pseudonym Walter Ramal.

    In 1908 de la Mare was awarded a yearly government pension of £100, and he devoted himself entirely to writing. He retired to Taplow in Buckinghamshire, where he lived with his wife, Constance Elfrida Ingpen, and four children. His son Richard became chairman of Faber & Faber, and published several of his father's books. In 1915 he became of of the legatees of his fellow poet Rupert Brooke. De la Mare received the CH in 1948, and the OM in 1953. He died at Twickenham, near London, on June 22, 1958. De la Mare is buried in St Paul's Cathedral.

    His first stories and poems De la Mare wrote for periodicals, among others for The Sketch, and published in 1902 a collection of poetry, SONGS OF CHILDHOOD, under the name Walter Ramal. It attracted little notice. Subsequently De la Mare published many volumes of poetry for both adults and children. In 1904 appeared under his own name the prose romance HENRY BROCKEN, in which the young hero encounters writers form the past.

    THE RETURN (1910) was an eerie story of spirit possession. Arthur Lawford suspects that an eighteenth-century pirate, Nicholas Sabathier, is seizing control of his personality. "'Here lie ye bones of one, Nicholas Sabathier,' he began murmuring again - 'merely bones, mind you; brains and heart are quite another story. And it's pretty certain the fellow had some kind of brains. Besides, poor devil, he killed himself. That seems to hint at brains..."

    De la Mare's first successful book was The Listeners; the title poem is one of his most anthologized pieces. In the work supernatural presence haunts the solitary Traveller, the typical speaker of his poems: "Is there anybody there? said the Traveller, / Knocking on the moonlit door; / And his horse in the silence champed the grasses / Of the forest's ferny floor.... / But no one descended to the Traveller; / No head from the leaf-fringed sill / Leaned over and looked into his grey eyes, / Where he stood perplexed and still." In 1923 he produced a collection of other people's poetry, COME HITHER. In his poems de la Mare has described the English sea and coast, the secret and hidden world of nature.

    His favorite themes, childhood, death, dreams, commonplace objects and events, de la Mare examined with a touch of mystery and often with an undercurrent of melancholy. His novels have been reprinted many times in horror collections because of their sense of wonder, and also hidden malevolence. However, De la Mare did not have the morbid atmosphere of Poe, but his dreamlike visions had much similarities with Blake.

    This page is based on the copyrighted Wikipedia Walter de la Mare; it is used under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License. You may redistribute it, verbatim or modified, providing that you comply with the terms of the CC-BY-SA.
    Walter de la Mare Poems

    The Listeners
    "Is there anybody there?" said the Traveller, Knocking on the moonlit door; And his horse in the silence champed the grass Of the forest's ferny floor;
    Silver
    Slowly, silently, now the moon Walks the night in her silver shoon; This way, and that, she peers, and sees Silver fruit upon silver trees;
    Some One
    Some one came knocking At my wee, small door; Someone came knocking; I'm sure-sure-sure;
    Music
    When music sounds, gone is the earth I know, And all her lovely things even lovelier grow; Her flowers in vision flame, her forest trees Lift burdened branches, stilled with ecstasies.
    Arabia
    Far are the shades of Arabia, Where the Princes ride at noon, 'Mid the verdurous vales and thickets, Under the ghost of the moon;
    Nicholas Nye
    Thistle and darnell and dock grew there, And a bush, in the corner, of may, On the orchard wall I used to sprawl In the blazing heat of the day;
    All That's Past
    Very old are the woods; And the buds that break Out of the brier's boughs, When March winds wake,
    A Song Of Enchantment
    A song of Enchantment I sang me there, In a green-green wood, by waters fair, Just as the words came up to me I sang it under the wild wood tree.
    An Epitaph
    Here lies a most beautiful lady, Light of step and heart was she; I think she was the most beautiful lady That ever was in the West Country.
    Alone
    The abode of the nightingale is bare, Flowered frost congeals in the gelid air, The fox howls from his frozen lair: Alas, my loved one is gone,
    AUTUMN (November)
    There is a wind where the rose was, Cold rain where sweet grass was, And clouds like sheep Stream o'er the steep
    The Ghost
    Peace in thy hands, Peace in thine eyes, Peace on thy brow; Flower of a moment in the eternal hour,
    Bones
    Said Mr. Smith, “I really cannot Tell you, Dr. Jones— The most peculiar pain I’m in— I think it’s in my bones.”
    Snow
    No breath of wind, No gleam of sun – Still the white snow Whirls softly down
    My father- "Take pride in who you are and where you came from. Life is hard, often fighting is the only option!"
    Ernest Hemingway- “In order to write about life, you must first live it.”
    http://www.lindleypoetry.com/category/a-poem-a-day/

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    A Marriage
    - Poem by Ronald Stuart Thomas

    We met
    under a shower
    of bird-notes.
    Fifty years passed,
    love's moment
    in a world in
    servitude to time.
    She was young;
    I kissed with my eyes
    closed and opened
    them on her wrinkles.
    `Come,' said death,
    choosing her as his
    partner for
    the last dance, And she,
    who in life
    had done everything
    with a bird's grace,
    opened her bill now
    for the shedding
    of one sigh no
    heavier than a feather.
    Ronald Stuart Thomas

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    A Blackbird Singing
    - Poem by Ronald Stuart Thomas


    It seems wrong that out of this bird,
    Black, bold, a suggestion of dark
    Places about it, there yet should come
    Such rich music, as though the notes'
    Ore were changed to a rare metal
    At one touch of that bright bill.

    You have heard it often, alone at your desk
    In a green April, your mind drawn
    Away from its work by sweet disturbance
    Of the mild evening outside your room.

    A slow singer, but loading each phrase
    With history's overtones, love, joy
    And grief learned by his dark tribe
    In other orchards and passed on
    Instinctively as they are now,
    But fresh always with new tears.


    Ronald Stuart Thomas
    ************************************************** *
    BIOGRAPHY
    Ronald Stuart Thomas poet

    Ronald Stuart Thomas was born in Cardiff in 1913, the son of a sea captain. He was educated at University College of North Wales and later undertook theological training at St Michael's College in Cardiff. He was ordained as an Anglican priest in 1936.

    During his time as a rector he began to write poetry and verse. His writing career continued for fifty years during which time he produced twenty volumes of poetry and was nominated for a Nobel prize and awarded the Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry. Whilst religion, understandably, was one of the major themes of his work, he also wrote about nature and about Welsh history. Thomas was fervent and often outspoken Welsh patriot and even wrote his autobiography Nab (Nobody - 1985) in Welsh.

    Thomas enjoyed working in the countryside and spent his whole time as a clergyman working in rural parishes. He retired in 1978. His first wife Elsi, by whom he had a son, died in 1991 after 51 years of marriage. He later married his second wife, Betty, who was with him until his death. He died at the age of 87 n 25th September 2000.

    Whilst still remembered for his Welsh republican views, it is for his religious poetry that he is still held in high regard. Of his work, he said:

    "My chief aim is to make a poem . You make it for yourself firstly, and then if other people want to join in... then there we are." His Collected Poems was published in 1993 and is still available today.

    This page is based on the copyrighted Wikipedia Ronald Stuart Thomas; it is used under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License. You may redistribute it, verbatim or modified, providing that you comply with the terms of the CC-BY-SA.
    Ronald Stuart Thomas Poems

    The Dance
    She is young. Have I the right Even to name her? Child, It is not love I offer
    A Day In Autumn
    It will not always be like this, The air windless, a few last Leaves adding their decoration To the trees’ shoulders, braiding the cuffs
    Children's Song
    We live in our own world, A world that is too small For you to stoop and enter Even on hands and knees,
    Ninetieth Birthday
    You go up the long track That will take a car, but is best walked On slow foot, noting the lichen That writes history on the page
    A Blackbird Singing
    It seems wrong that out of this bird, Black, bold, a suggestion of dark Places about it, there yet should come Such rich music, as though the notes'
    A Marriage
    We met under a shower of bird-notes.
    A Welsh Testament
    All right, I was Welsh. Does it matter? I spoke a tongue that was passed on To me in the place I happened to be, A place huddled between grey walls
    A Peasant
    Iago Prytherch his name, though, be it allowed, Just an ordinary man of the bald Welsh hills, Who pens a few sheep in a gap of cloud. Docking mangels, chipping the green skin
    Welsh Landscape
    To live in Wales is to be conscious At dusk of the spilled blood That went into the making of the wild sky, Dyeing the immaculate rivers
    The Cat And The Sea
    It is a matter of a black cat On a bare cliff top in March Whose eyes anticipate The gorse petals;
    Here
    I am a man now. Pass your hand over my brow. You can feel the place where the brains grow.
    Pisces
    Who said to the trout, You shall die on Good Friday To be food for a man And his pretty lady?
    Death Of A Poet
    Laid now on his smooth bed For the last time, watching dully Through heavy eyelids the day's colour Widow the sky, what can he say
    Welsh History
    We were a people taut for war; the hills Were no harder, the thin grass Clothed them more warmly than the coarse Shirts our small bones.

    All poems of Ronald Stuart Thomas »
    My father- "Take pride in who you are and where you came from. Life is hard, often fighting is the only option!"
    Ernest Hemingway- “In order to write about life, you must first live it.”
    http://www.lindleypoetry.com/category/a-poem-a-day/

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  5. #679
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tyr-Ziu Saxnot View Post
    A Marriage
    - Poem by Ronald Stuart Thomas

    We met
    under a shower
    of bird-notes.
    Fifty years passed,
    love's moment
    in a world in
    servitude to time.
    She was young;
    I kissed with my eyes
    closed and opened
    them on her wrinkles.
    `Come,' said death,
    choosing her as his
    partner for
    the last dance, And she,
    who in life
    had done everything
    with a bird's grace,
    opened her bill now
    for the shedding
    of one sigh no
    heavier than a feather.
    Ronald Stuart Thomas

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------


    A Blackbird Singing
    - Poem by Ronald Stuart Thomas


    It seems wrong that out of this bird,
    Black, bold, a suggestion of dark
    Places about it, there yet should come
    Such rich music, as though the notes'
    Ore were changed to a rare metal
    At one touch of that bright bill.

    You have heard it often, alone at your desk
    In a green April, your mind drawn
    Away from its work by sweet disturbance
    Of the mild evening outside your room.

    A slow singer, but loading each phrase
    With history's overtones, love, joy
    And grief learned by his dark tribe
    In other orchards and passed on
    Instinctively as they are now,
    But fresh always with new tears.


    Ronald Stuart Thomas
    ************************************************** *


    BIOGRAPHY
    Ronald Stuart Thomas poet

    Ronald Stuart Thomas was born in Cardiff in 1913, the son of a sea captain. He was educated at University College of North Wales and later undertook theological training at St Michael's College in Cardiff. He was ordained as an Anglican priest in 1936.

    During his time as a rector he began to write poetry and verse. His writing career continued for fifty years during which time he produced twenty volumes of poetry and was nominated for a Nobel prize and awarded the Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry. Whilst religion, understandably, was one of the major themes of his work, he also wrote about nature and about Welsh history. Thomas was fervent and often outspoken Welsh patriot and even wrote his autobiography Nab (Nobody - 1985) in Welsh.

    Thomas enjoyed working in the countryside and spent his whole time as a clergyman working in rural parishes. He retired in 1978. His first wife Elsi, by whom he had a son, died in 1991 after 51 years of marriage. He later married his second wife, Betty, who was with him until his death. He died at the age of 87 n 25th September 2000.

    Whilst still remembered for his Welsh republican views, it is for his religious poetry that he is still held in high regard. Of his work, he said:

    "My chief aim is to make a poem . You make it for yourself firstly, and then if other people want to join in... then there we are." His Collected Poems was published in 1993 and is still available today.

    This page is based on the copyrighted Wikipedia Ronald Stuart Thomas; it is used under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License. You may redistribute it, verbatim or modified, providing that you comply with the terms of the CC-BY-SA.
    Ronald Stuart Thomas Poems

    The Dance
    She is young. Have I the right Even to name her? Child, It is not love I offer
    A Day In Autumn
    It will not always be like this, The air windless, a few last Leaves adding their decoration To the trees’ shoulders, braiding the cuffs
    Children's Song
    We live in our own world, A world that is too small For you to stoop and enter Even on hands and knees,
    Ninetieth Birthday
    You go up the long track That will take a car, but is best walked On slow foot, noting the lichen That writes history on the page
    A Blackbird Singing
    It seems wrong that out of this bird, Black, bold, a suggestion of dark Places about it, there yet should come Such rich music, as though the notes'
    A Marriage
    We met under a shower of bird-notes.
    A Welsh Testament
    All right, I was Welsh. Does it matter? I spoke a tongue that was passed on To me in the place I happened to be, A place huddled between grey walls
    A Peasant
    Iago Prytherch his name, though, be it allowed, Just an ordinary man of the bald Welsh hills, Who pens a few sheep in a gap of cloud. Docking mangels, chipping the green skin
    Welsh Landscape
    To live in Wales is to be conscious At dusk of the spilled blood That went into the making of the wild sky, Dyeing the immaculate rivers
    The Cat And The Sea
    It is a matter of a black cat On a bare cliff top in March Whose eyes anticipate The gorse petals;
    Here
    I am a man now. Pass your hand over my brow. You can feel the place where the brains grow.
    Pisces
    Who said to the trout, You shall die on Good Friday To be food for a man And his pretty lady?
    Death Of A Poet
    Laid now on his smooth bed For the last time, watching dully Through heavy eyelids the day's colour Widow the sky, what can he say
    Welsh History
    We were a people taut for war; the hills Were no harder, the thin grass Clothed them more warmly than the coarse Shirts our small bones.

    All poems of Ronald Stuart Thomas »



    Good Morning Tyr.....very nice!
    ~ "It is a matter of a black cat On a bare cliff top in March Whose eyes anticipate The gorse petals;
    Here
    I am a man now. Pass your hand over my brow. You can feel the place where the brains grow.
    Pisces...." ~




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  7. #680
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    Sonnet
    - Poem by Arthur Davison Ficke

    There are strange shadows fostered of the moon,
    More numerous than the clear-cut shade of day….
    Go forth, when all the leaves whisper of June,
    Into the dusk of swooping bats at play;
    Or go into that late November dusk
    When hills take on the noble lines of death,
    And on the air the faint, astringent musk
    Of rotting leaves pours vaguely troubling breath.
    Then shall you see shadows whereof the sun,
    Knows nothing—aye, a thousand shadows there
    Shall leap and flicker and stir and stay and run,
    Like petrels of the changing foul or fair;
    Like ghosts of twilight, of the moon, of him
    Whose homeland lies past each horizon's rim….
    Arthur Davison Ficke
    My father- "Take pride in who you are and where you came from. Life is hard, often fighting is the only option!"
    Ernest Hemingway- “In order to write about life, you must first live it.”
    http://www.lindleypoetry.com/category/a-poem-a-day/

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    The Helmsman
    - Poem by Hilda Doolittle


    O be swift—
    we have always known you wanted us.

    We fled inland with our flocks.
    we pastured them in hollows,
    cut off from the wind
    and the salt track of the marsh.

    We worshipped inland—
    we stepped past wood-flowers,
    we forgot your tang,
    we brushed wood-grass.

    We wandered from pine-hills
    through oak and scrub-oak tangles,
    we broke hyssop and bramble,
    we caught flower and new bramble-fruit
    in our hair: we laughed
    as each branch whipped back,
    we tore our feet in half-buried rocks
    and knotted roots and acorn-cups.

    We forgot—we worshipped,
    we parted green from green,
    we sought further thickets,
    we dipped our ankles
    through leaf-mould and earth,
    and wood and wood-bank enchanted us—

    and the feel of the clefts in the bark,
    and the slope between tree and tree—
    and a slender path strung field to field
    and wood to wood
    and hill to hill
    and the forest after it.

    We forgot—for a moment
    tree-resin, tree-bark,
    sweat of a torn branch
    were sweet to taste.

    We were enchanted with the fields,
    the tufts of coarse grass—
    in the shorter grass—
    we loved all this.

    But now, our boat climbs—hesitates—drops—
    climbs—hesitates—crawls back—
    climbs—hesitates—
    O, be swift—
    we have always known you wanted us.
    Hilda Doolittle

    ************************************************** ************

    Biography of Hilda Doolittle

    Hilda Doolittle poet

    H.D. (born Hilda Doolittle) was an American poet, novelist and memoirist known for her association with the early 20th century avant-garde Imagist group of poets such as Ezra Pound and Richard Aldington. The Imagist model was based on the idioms, rhythms and clarity of common speech, and freedom to choose subject matter as the writer saw fit. H.D.'s later writing developed on this aesthetic to incorporate a more female-centric version of modernism.

    H.D. was born in Pennsylvania in 1886, and moved to London in 1911 where her publications earned her a central role within the then emerging Imagism movement. A charismatic figure, she was championed by the modernist poet Ezra Pound, who was instrumental in building and furthering her career. From 1916–17, she acted as the literary editor of the Egoist journal, while her poetry appeared in the English Review and the Transatlantic Review. During the First World War, H.D. suffered the death of her brother and the breakup of her marriage to the poet Richard Aldington, and these events weighed heavily on her later poetry. Glenn Hughes, the authority on Imagism, said of her 'her loneliness cries out from her poems. She had a deep interest in Ancient Greek literature, and her poetry often borrowed from Greek mythology and classical poets. Her work is noted for its incorporation of natural scenes and objects, which are often used to emote a particular feeling or mood.

    She befriended Sigmund Freud during the 1930s, and became his patient in order to understand and express her bisexuality.

    H.D. married once, and undertook a number of heterosexual and lesbian relationships. She was unapologetic about her sexuality, and thus became an icon for both the gay rights and feminist movements when her poems, plays, letters and essays were rediscovered during the 1970s and 1980s. This period saw a wave of feminist literature on the gendering of Modernism and psychoanalytical misogyny, by a generation of writers who saw her as an early icon of the feminist movement.

    Career

    Early life

    Hilda Doolittle was born into the Moravian community in Bethlehem in Pennsylvania's Lehigh Valley. Her father, Charles Doolittle, was professor of astronomy at Lehigh University and her mother, Helen (Wolle), was a Moravian with a strong interest in music. In 1896, Charles Doolittle was appointed Flower Professor of Astronomy at the University of Pennsylvania, and the family moved to a house in Upper Darby, an affluent Philadelphia suburb. She attended Philadelphia's Friends Central High School, at Fifteenth and Race streets, graduating in 1905. In 1901, she met and befriended Ezra Pound, who was to play a major role both in her private life and her emergence as a writer. In 1905, Pound presented her with a sheaf of love poems under the collective title Hilda's Book.

    That year, Doolittle attended Bryn Mawr College to study Greek literature, but left after only three terms due to poor grades and the excuse of poor health. While at the college, she met the poets Marianne Moore and William Carlos Williams. Her first published writings, some stories for children, were published in The Comrade, a Philadelphia Presbyterian Church paper, between 1909 and 1913, mostly under the name Edith Gray. In 1907, she became engaged to Pound. Her father disapproved of Pound,] and by the time her father left for Europe in 1908, the engagement had been called off. Around this time, H.D. started a relationship with a young female art student at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, Frances Josepha Gregg. After spending part of 1910 living in Greenwich Village, she sailed to Europe with Gregg and Gregg's mother in 1911. In Europe, H.D. began a more serious career as a writer. Her relationship with Gregg cooled, and she met a writing enthusiast named Brigit Patmore with whom she became involved in an affair. Patmore introduced H.D. to another poet, Richard Aldington.

    H.D. Imagiste

    Soon after arriving in England, H.D. showed Pound some poems she had written. Pound had already begun to meet with other poets at the Eiffel Tower restaurant in Soho. He was impressed by the closeness of H.D. poems's to the ideas and principles he had been discussing with Aldington, with whom he had shared plans to reform contemporary poetry through free verse, the tanka and the tightness and conciseness of the haiku, and the removal of all unnecessary verbiage. In summer 1912, the three poets declared themselves the "three original Imagists", and set out their principles as:
    Direct treatment of the 'thing' whether subjective or objective.
    To use absolutely no word that does not contribute to the presentation.
    As regarding rhythm: to compose in the sequence of the musical phrase, not in the sequence of a metronome.

    During a meeting with H.D. in a tea room near the British Museum that year, Pound appended the signature H.D. Imagiste to her poetry, creating a label that was to stick to the poet for most of her writing life. However H.D. told different versions of this story at various times, and during her career published under a variety of pseudonyms. That same year, Harriet Monroe started her Poetry magazine and asked Pound to act as foreign editor. In October, he submitted three poems each by H.D. and Aldington under the rubric Imagiste. Aldington's poems were in the November issue of Poetry and her poems "Hermes of the Ways," "Orchard," and "Epigram", in the January 1913 issue. Imagism as a movement was launched with H.D. as its prime exponent.

    The early models for the Imagist group were from Japan, and H.D. often visited the exclusive Print Room at the British Museum in the company of Richard Aldington and the curator and poet Laurence Binyon in order to examine Nishiki-e prints that incorporated traditional Japanese verse. However, she also derived her way of making poems from her reading of Classical Greek literature and especially of Sappho, an interest she shared with Aldington and Pound, each of whom produced versions of the Greek poet's work. In 1915, H.D. and Aldington launched the Poets' Translation Series, pamphlets of translations from Greek and Latin classics. H.D. worked on the plays by Euripides, publishing in 1916 a translation of choruses from Iphigeneia at Aulis, in 1919 a translation of choruses from Iphigeneia at Aulis and Hippolytus, an adaptation of Hippolytus called Hippolytus Temporizes (1927), a translation of choruses from The Bacchae and Hecuba (1931), and Euripides' Ion (1937) a loose translation of Ion.

    She continued her association with the group until the final issue of the Some Imagist Poets anthology in 1917. She and Aldington did most of the editorial work on the 1915 anthology. Her work also appeared in Aldington's Imagist Anthology 1930. All of her poetry up to the end of the 1930s was written in an Imagist mode, utilising spare use of language, and a classical, austere purity. This style of writing was not without its critics. In a special Imagist issue of The Egoist magazine in May 1915, the poet and critic Harold Monro called H.D.'s early work "petty poetry", denoting "either poverty of imagination or needlessly excessive restraint".

    Oread, one of her earliest and best-known poems, which was first published in the 1915 anthology, illustrates this early style:

    Whirl up, sea—
    Whirl your pointed pines.
    Splash your great pines
    On our rocks.
    Hurl your green over us—
    Cover us with your pools of fir.

    World War I and after

    Before World War I, H.D. married Aldington in 1913; however, their first and only child, a daughter, was stillborn in 1915. Aldington enlisted in the army. The couple became estranged and Aldington reportedly took a mistress in 1917. H.D.

    became involved in a close but platonic relationship with D. H. Lawrence. In 1916, her first book, Sea Garden, was published and she was appointed assistant editor of The Egoist, replacing her husband. In 1918, her brother Gilbert was killed in action, and that March she moved into a cottage in Cornwall with the composer Cecil Gray, a friend of Lawrence's. She became pregnant with Gray's child, however, by the time she realised she was expecting, the relationship had cooled and Gray had returned to live in London. When Aldington returned from active service he was noticeably traumatised, and he and H.D. later separated.

    Close to the end of the war, H.D. met the wealthy English novelist Bryher (Annie Winifred Ellerman). They lived together until 1946, and although both took numerous other partners, Bryher remained her lover for the rest of H.D.'s life. In 1919, H.D. came close to death when she gave birth to her daughter Frances Perdita Aldington—although the father was not Aldington, but Gray—while suffering from war influenza. During this time, her father, who had never recovered from Gilbert's death, died. In 1919, H.D. wrote one of her few known statements on poetics, Notes on Thought and Vision, which was unpublished until 1982. In this, she speaks of poets (herself included) as belonging to a kind of elite group of visionaries with the power to 'turn the whole tide of human thought'.

    H.D. and Aldington attempted to salvage their relationship during this time, but he was suffering from the effects of his participation in the war, possibly post-traumatic stress disorder, and they became estranged, living completely separate lives, but not divorcing until 1938. They remained friends, however, for the rest of their lives. From 1920, her relationship with Bryher became closer and the pair travelled in Egypt, Greece and the United States before eventually settling in Switzerland. Bryher entered a marriage of convenience in 1921 with Robert McAlmon, which allowed him to fund his publishing ventures in Paris by utilising some of her personal wealth for his Contact Press.Both Bryher and H.D. slept with McAlmon during this time. Bryher and McAlmon divorced in 1927.

    Novels, films and psychoanalysis

    In the early 1920s, H.D. started to write three projected cycles of novels. The first of these, Magna Graeca, consists of Palimpsest (1921) and Hedylus (1928). The Magna Graeca novels use their classical settings to explore the poetic vocation, particularly as it applies to women in a patriarchal literary culture. The Madrigal cycle consists of HERmione, Bid Me to Live, Paint It Today and Asphodel, and is largely autobiographical, dealing with the development of the female artist and the conflict between heterosexual and lesbian desire. Kora and Ka and The Usual Star, two novellas from the Borderline cycle, were published in 1933. In this period, she also wrote Pilate's Wife, Mira-Mare, and Nights.

    During this period her mother had died and Bryher had divorced her husband, only to marry H.D.'s new male lover, Kenneth Macpherson. H.D., Bryher, and Macpherson lived together and traveled through Europe as what the poet and critic Barbara Guest termed in her biography of H.D. as a 'menagerie of three'. Bryher and Macpherson adopted H.D.'s daughter, Perdita. In 1928, H.D. became pregnant but chose to abort the pregnancy in November. Bryher and Macpherson set up the magazine Close Up (to which H.D. regularly contributed) as a medium for intellectual discussion of cinema. In 1927, the small independent film cinema group POOL or Pool Group was established (largely funded with Bryher's inheritance) and was managed by all three. Only one POOL film survives in its entirety, Borderline (1930), which featured H.D. and Paul Robeson in the lead roles. In common with the Borderline novellas, the film explores extreme psychic states and their relationship to surface reality. As well as acting in this film, H.D. wrote an explanatory pamphlet to accompany it, a piece later published in Close Up.

    In 1933, H.D. traveled to Vienna to undergo analysis with Sigmund Freud. She had an interest in Freud's theories as far back as 1909, when she read some of his works in the original German. H.D. was referred by Bryher's psychoanalyst due to her increasing paranoia about the rise of Adolf Hitler which indicated another world war, an idea that H.D. found intolerable. The Great War (World War I) had left her feeling shattered. She had lost her brother in action, while her husband suffered effects of combat experiences, and she believed that the onslaught of the war indirectly caused the death of her child with Aldington: she believed it was her shock at hearing the news about the RMS Lusitania that directly caused her miscarriage. Writing on the Wall, her memoir about this psychoanalysis, was written concurrently with Trilogy and published in 1944; in 1956 it was republished with Advent, a journal of the analysis, under the title Tribute to Freud.

    World War II and after

    H.D. and Bryher spent the duration of World War II in London. During this time, H.D. wrote The Gift, a memoir of her childhood and family life in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, which reflects on people and events in her background that helped shape her as a writer. The Gift was eventually published in 1960 and 1982. She also wrote Trilogy, published as The Walls do not Fall (1944), Tribute to the Angels (1945) and The Flowering of the Rod (1946). The opening lines of The Walls do not Fall clearly and immediately signal H.D.'s break with her earlier work:

    An incident here and there,
    and rails gone (for guns)
    from your (and my) old town square.

    After the war, H.D. and Bryher no longer lived together, but remained in contact. H.D. moved to Switzerland where, in the spring of 1946, she suffered a severe mental breakdown which resulted in her staying in a clinic until the autumn of that year. Apart from a number of trips to the States, H.D. spent the rest of her life in Switzerland. In the late 1950s, she underwent more treatment, this time with the psychoanalyst Erich Heydt. At Heydt's prompting, she wrote End to Torment, a memoir of her relationship with Pound, who allowed the poems of Hilda's Book to be included when the book was published. Doolittle was one of the leading figures in the bohemian culture of London in the early decades of the century. Her later poetry explores traditional epic themes, such as violence and war, from a feminist perspective. H.D. was the first woman to be granted the American Academy of Arts and Letters medal.

    Later life and death

    During the 1950s, H.D. wrote a considerable amount of poetry, most notably Helen in Egypt (written between 1952–54), an examination from a feminist point of view of a male-centred epic poetry. H.D. used Euripides's play Helen as a starting point for a reinterpretation of the basis of the Trojan War and, by extension, of war itself. This work has been seen by some critics, including Jeffrey Twitchell-Waas, as H.D.'s response to Pound's Cantos, a work she greatly admired. Other poems from this period include Sagesse, Winter Love and Hermetic Definition. These three were published posthumously with the collective title Hermetic Definition (1972). The poem Hermetic Definition takes as its starting points her love for a man 30 years her junior and the line 'so slow is the rose to open' from Pound's Canto 106. Sagesse, written in bed after H.D. had broken her hip in a fall, serves as a kind of coda to Trilogy, being partly written in the voice of a young female Blitz survivor who finds herself living in fear of the atom bomb. Winter Love was written together with End to Torment and uses as narrator the Homeric figure of Penelope to restate the material of the memoir in poetic form. At one time, H.D. considered appending this poem as a coda to Helen in Egypt.

    H.D. visited the United States in 1960 to collect an American Academy of Arts and Letters medal. Returning to Switzerland, she suffered a stroke in July 1961 and died a couple of months later in the Klinik Hirslanden in Zürich. Her ashes were returned to Bethlehem, and were buried in the family plot in the Nisky Hill Cemetery on October 28, 1961. Her epitaph consists of the following lines from her early poem "Let Zeus Record":

    So you may say,
    Greek flower; Greek ecstasy
    reclaims forever
    one who died
    following intricate song's
    lost measure.

    Legacy

    The rediscovery of H.D. began in the 1970s, and coincided with the emergence of a feminist criticism that found much to admire in the questioning of gender roles typical of her writings. Specifically, those critics who were challenging the standard view of English-language literary modernism based on the work of such male writers as Pound, Eliot and James Joyce, were able to restore H.D. to a more significant position in the history of that movement. Her writings have served as a model for a number of more recent women poets working in the modernist tradition; including the New York School poet Barbara Guest, the Anglo-American poet Denise Levertov, the Black Mountain poet Hilda Morley and the Language poet Susan Howe. Her influence is not limited to female poets, and many male writers, including Robert Duncan and Robert Creeley, have acknowledged their debt.

    Hilda Doolittle's Works:

    Poems

    "Eurydice"
    "Sea Rose"
    "Garden"
    "Mid-day"
    "Hermes of the Ways"
    "The Helmsman"
    "Helen"
    "Oread"
    "Heat"

    Poetry collections

    Sea Garden (1916)
    The God (1917)
    Translations (1920)
    Hymen (1921)
    Heliodora and Other Poems (1924)
    Hippolytus Temporizes (1927)
    Red Roses for Bronze (1932)
    The Walls Do Not Fall (1944)
    Tribute to the Angels (1945)
    Trilogy (1946)
    Flowering of the Rod (1946)
    By Avon River (1949)
    Helen in Egypt, New Directions (1961)
    Hermetic Definition, New Directions (1972)

    Prose

    Notes on Thought and Vision (1919)
    Paint it Today (written 1921, published 1992)
    Asphodel (written 1921-22, published 1992)
    Palimpsest (1926)
    Kora and Ka (1930)
    Nights (1935)
    The Hedgehog (1936)
    Tribute to Freud (1956)
    Bid Me to Live (1960)
    End to Torment: A Memoir of Ezra Pound, New Directions (1979)
    HERmione, New Directions (1981)
    The Gift, New Directions (1982)
    Majic Ring (written 1943-44, published 2009)
    The Sword Went Out to Sea (written 1946-47, published 2007)
    White Rose and the Red (written 1948, published 2009)
    The Mystery (written 1948-51, published 2009)

    This page is based on the copyrighted Wikipedia Hilda Doolittle; it is used under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License. You may redistribute it, verbatim or modified, providing that you comply with the terms of the CC-BY-SA.
    Hilda Doolittle Poems

    Helen
    All Greece hates the still eyes in the white face, the lustre as of olives where she stands,
    Sea Rose
    Rose, harsh rose, marred and with stint of petals, meagre flower, thin, sparse of leaf,
    Adonis
    1. Each of us like you has died once,
    The Mysteries Remain
    The mysteries remain, I keep the same cycle of seed-time and of sun and rain;
    Pear Tree
    Silver dust lifted from the earth, higher than my arms reach, you have mounted.
    Oread
    Whirl up, sea— Whirl your pointed pines. Splash your great pines On our rocks.
    Sheltered Garden
    I have had enough. I gasp for breath. Every way ends, every road,
    Leda
    Where the slow river meets the tide, a red swan lifts red wings and darker beak,
    Sea Poppies
    Amber husk fluted with gold, fruit on the sand marked with a rich grain,
    Heat
    O wind, rend open the heat, cut apart the heat, rend it to tatters.
    At Baia
    I should have thought in a dream you would have brought some lovely, perilous thing, orchids piled in a great sheath,
    The Pool
    Are you alive? I touch you. You quiver like a sea-fish. I cover you with my net.
    At Ithaca
    Over and back, the long waves crawl and track the sand with foam; night darkens, and the sea
    Acon
    Bear me to Dictaeus, and to the steep slopes; to the river Erymanthus.
    My friends , this is brilliant poetry from a magnificent poetic mind, a writing genius, IMHO...-TYR
    My father- "Take pride in who you are and where you came from. Life is hard, often fighting is the only option!"
    Ernest Hemingway- “In order to write about life, you must first live it.”
    http://www.lindleypoetry.com/category/a-poem-a-day/

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    The Congo: A Study of the Negro Race
    ---- By Vachel Lindsay

    I. THEIR BASIC SAVAGERY
    Fat black bucks in a wine-barrel room,
    Barrel-house kings, with feet unstable,
    Sagged and reeled and pounded on the table,
    Pounded on the table,
    Beat an empty barrel with the handle of a broom,
    Hard as they were able,
    Boom, boom, BOOM,
    With a silk umbrella and the handle of a broom,
    Boomlay, boomlay, boomlay, BOOM.
    THEN I had religion, THEN I had a vision.
    I could not turn from their revel in derision.
    THEN I SAW THE CONGO, CREEPING THROUGH THE BLACK,
    CUTTING THROUGH THE FOREST WITH A GOLDEN TRACK.
    Then along that riverbank
    A thousand miles
    Tattooed cannibals danced in files;
    Then I heard the boom of the blood-lust song
    And a thigh-bone beating on a tin-pan gong.
    And “BLOOD” screamed the whistles and the fifes of the warriors,
    “BLOOD” screamed the skull-faced, lean witch-doctors,
    “Whirl ye the deadly voo-doo rattle,
    Harry the uplands,
    Steal all the cattle,
    Rattle-rattle, rattle-rattle,
    Bing.
    Boomlay, boomlay, boomlay, BOOM,”
    A roaring, epic, rag-time tune
    From the mouth of the Congo
    To the Mountains of the Moon.
    Death is an Elephant,
    Torch-eyed and horrible,
    Foam-flanked and terrible.
    BOOM, steal the pygmies,
    BOOM, kill the Arabs,
    BOOM, kill the white men,
    HOO, HOO, HOO.
    Listen to the yell of Leopold’s ghost
    Burning in Hell for his hand-maimed host.
    Hear how the demons chuckle and yell
    Cutting his hands off, down in Hell.
    Listen to the creepy proclamation,
    Blown through the lairs of the forest-nation,
    Blown past the white-ants’ hill of clay,
    Blown past the marsh where the butterflies play: —
    “Be careful what you do,
    Or Mumbo-Jumbo, God of the Congo,
    And all of the other
    Gods of the Congo,
    Mumbo-Jumbo will hoo-doo you,
    Mumbo-Jumbo will hoo-doo you,
    Mumbo-Jumbo will hoo-doo you.”

    II. THEIR IRREPRESSIBLE HIGH SPIRITS
    Wild crap-shooters with a whoop and a call
    Danced the juba in their gambling-hall
    And laughed fit to kill, and shook the town,
    And guyed the policemen and laughed them down
    With a boomlay, boomlay, boomlay, BOOM.
    THEN I SAW THE CONGO, CREEPING THROUGH THE BLACK,
    CUTTING THROUGH THE FOREST WITH A GOLDEN TRACK.
    A negro fairyland swung into view,
    A minstrel river
    Where dreams come true.
    The ebony palace soared on high
    Through the blossoming trees to the evening sky.
    The inlaid porches and casements shone
    With gold and ivory and elephant-bone.
    And the black crowd laughed till their sides were sore
    At the baboon butler in the agate door,
    And the well-known tunes of the parrot band
    That trilled on the bushes of that magic land.

    A troupe of skull-faced witch-men came
    Through the agate doorway in suits of flame,
    Yea, long-tailed coats with a gold-leaf crust
    And hats that were covered with diamond-dust.
    And the crowd in the court gave a whoop and a call
    And danced the juba from wall to wall.
    But the witch-men suddenly stilled the throng
    With a stern cold glare, and a stern old song: —
    “Mumbo-Jumbo will hoo-doo you.” ...
    Just then from the doorway, as fat as shotes,
    Came the cake-walk princes in their long red coats,
    Canes with a brilliant lacquer shine,
    And tall silk hats that were red as wine.
    And they pranced with their butterfly partners there,
    Coal-black maidens with pearls in their hair,
    Knee-skirts trimmed with the jassamine sweet,
    And bells on their ankles and little black-feet.
    And the couples railed at the chant and the frown
    Of the witch-men lean, and laughed them down.
    (O rare was the revel, and well worth while
    That made those glowering witch-men smile.)

    The cake-walk royalty then began
    To walk for a cake that was tall as a man
    To the tune of “Boomlay, boomlay, BOOM,”
    While the witch-men laughed, with a sinister air,
    And sang with the scalawags prancing there: —
    “Walk with care, walk with care,
    Or Mumbo-Jumbo, God of the Congo,
    And all the other
    Gods of the Congo,
    Mumbo-Jumbo will hoo-doo you.
    Beware, beware, walk with care,
    Boomlay, boomlay, boomlay, boom.
    Boomlay, boomlay, boomlay, boom.
    Boomlay, boomlay, boomlay, boom.
    Boomlay, boomlay, boomlay,
    BOOM.”
    Oh rare was the revel, and well worth while
    That made those glowering witch-men smile.

    III. THE HOPE OF THEIR RELIGION
    A good old negro in the slums of the town
    Preached at a sister for her velvet gown.
    Howled at a brother for his low-down ways,
    His prowling, guzzling, sneak-thief days.
    Beat on the Bible till he wore it out
    Starting the jubilee revival shout.
    And some had visions, as they stood on chairs,
    And sang of Jacob, and the golden stairs,
    And they all repented, a thousand strong
    From their stupor and savagery and sin and wrong
    And slammed with their hymn books till they shook the room
    With “glory, glory, glory,”
    And “Boom, boom, BOOM.”
    THEN I SAW THE CONGO, CREEPING THROUGH THE BLACK,
    CUTTING THROUGH THE FOREST WITH A GOLDEN TRACK.
    And the gray sky opened like a new-rent veil
    And showed the Apostles with their coats of mail.
    In bright white steel they were seated round
    And their fire-eyes watched where the Congo wound.
    And the twelve Apostles, from their thrones on high
    Thrilled all the forest with their heavenly cry: —
    “Mumbo-Jumbo will die in the jungle;
    Never again will he hoo-doo you,
    Never again will he hoo-doo you.”

    Then along that river, a thousand miles
    The vine-snared trees fell down in files.
    Pioneer angels cleared the way
    For a Congo paradise, for babes at play,
    For sacred capitals, for temples clean.
    Gone were the skull-faced witch-men lean.
    There, where the wild ghost-gods had wailed
    A million boats of the angels sailed
    With oars of silver, and prows of blue
    And silken pennants that the sun shone through.
    ’Twas a land transfigured, ’twas a new creation.
    Oh, a singing wind swept the negro nation
    And on through the backwoods clearing flew: —
    “Mumbo-Jumbo is dead in the jungle.
    Never again will he hoo-doo you.
    Never again will he hoo-doo you.

    Redeemed were the forests, the beasts and the men,
    And only the vulture dared again
    By the far, lone mountains of the moon
    To cry, in the silence, the Congo tune:—
    “Mumbo-Jumbo will hoo-doo you,
    “Mumbo-Jumbo will hoo-doo you.
    Mumbo ... Jumbo ... will ... hoo-doo ... you.”
    ************************************************** ****

    Vachel Lindsay
    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Vachel Lindsay
    Nicholas Vachel Lindsay 1913.jpg
    Lindsay in 1913
    Born November 10, 1879
    Springfield, Illinois, United States
    Died December 5, 1931 (aged 52)
    Springfield, Illinois, United States
    Occupation Poet

    Nicholas Vachel Lindsay (/ˈveɪtʃəl ˈlɪnzi/; November 10, 1879 – December 5, 1931) was an American poet. He is considered a founder of modern singing poetry, as he referred to it, in which verses are meant to be sung or chanted.

    Contents

    1 Early years
    2 Beginnings as a poet
    3 Poetry as performance
    4 Attitudes towards race
    5 Later years
    5.1 Fame
    5.2 Marriage, children and financial troubles
    5.3 Suicide
    5.4 Legacy
    5.4.1 Literary
    5.4.2 Archives etc
    6 Selected works
    7 References and notes
    8 External links

    Early years

    Lindsay was born in Springfield, Illinois where his father, Vachel Thomas Lindsay, worked as a medical doctor and had amassed considerable financial resources. The Lindsays lived across the street from the Illinois Executive Mansion, home of the Governor of Illinois. The location of his childhood home influenced Lindsay, and one of his poems, "The Eagle Forgotten", eulogizes Illinois governor John P. Altgeld, whom Lindsay admired for his courage in pardoning the anarchists involved in the Haymarket Affair, despite the strong protests of US President Grover Cleveland.

    Growing up in Springfield influenced Lindsay in other ways, as evidenced in such poems as "On the Building of Springfield" and culminating in poems praising Springfield's most famous resident, Abraham Lincoln. In "Lincoln", Lindsay exclaims, "Would I might rouse the Lincoln in you all!" In his 1914 poem "Abraham Lincoln Walks at Midnight (In Springfield, Illinois)", Lindsay specifically places Lincoln in Springfield, with the poem's opening:

    It is portentous, and a thing of state
    That here at midnight, in our little town
    A mourning figure walks, and will not rest...

    Lindsay studied medicine at Ohio's Hiram College from 1897 to 1900, but he did not want to be a doctor; his parents were pressuring him toward medicine. Once he wrote to them that he wasn't meant to be a doctor but a painter; they wrote back saying that doctors can draw pictures in their free time. He left Hiram anyway, heading to Chicago to study at the Art Institute of Chicago from 1900 to 1903. In 1904 he left to attend the New York School of Art (now The New School) to study pen and ink. Lindsay remained interested in art for the rest of his life, drawing illustrations for some of his poetry. His art studies also probably led him to appreciate the new art form of silent film.[1] His 1915 book The Art of the Moving Picture is generally considered the first book of film criticism, according to critic Stanley Kauffmann, discussing Lindsay in For the Love of Movies: The Story of American Film Criticism.
    Beginnings as a poet
    Vachel Lindsay in 1912

    While in New York in 1905 Lindsay turned to poetry in earnest. He tried to sell his poems on the streets. Self-printing his poems, he began to barter a pamphlet titled "Rhymes To Be Traded For Bread", which he traded for food as a self-perceived modern version of a medieval troubadour.

    From March to May, 1906, Lindsay traveled roughly 600 miles on foot from Jacksonville, Florida, to Kentucky, again trading his poetry for food and lodging. From April to May, 1908, Lindsay undertook another poetry-selling trek, walking from New York City to Hiram, Ohio.

    From May to September 1912 he traveled — again on foot — from Illinois to New Mexico, trading his poems for food and lodging. During this last trek, Lindsay composed his most famous poem, "The Congo". Going through Kansas, he was supposedly so successful that "he had to send money home to keep his pockets empty".[2] On his return, Harriet Monroe published in Poetry magazine first his poem "General William Booth Enters into Heaven" in 1913 and then "The Congo" in 1914. At this point, Lindsay became very well known.
    Poetry as performance

    This article possibly contains original research. Please improve it by verifying the claims made and adding inline citations. Statements consisting only of original research should be removed. (September 2007) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)

    Unlike Lindsay’s more purely intellectual contemporaries, the poet declaimed his works from the stage, complete with the extravagant gestures of a carnival barker and old time preacher, from the beginning declaring himself to be a product of what he termed ‘Higher Vaudeville’: “I think that my first poetic impulse is for music; second a definite conception with the ring of the universe...” (Vachel Lindsay, Edgar Lee Masters 1935, page 62) This is evidenced by the 1931 recording he made just before his suicide, his still-radical performances of ‘The Mysterious Cat’, ‘The Flower-Fed Buffaloes’ and parts of ‘The Congo’ exhibiting a fiery and furious, zany, at times incoherent delivery that appears to have owed more to jazz than poetry, though the highly religious Lindsay was always reluctant to align himself thus.

    Part of the success and great fame that Lindsay achieved — albeit briefly — was due to the singular manner in which he presented his poetry "fundamentally as a performance, as an aural and temporal experience...meant...to be chanted, whispered, belted out, sung, amplified by gesticulation and movement, and punctuated by shouts and whoops." [2]

    Whirl ye the deadly voo-doo rattle,
    Harry the uplands,
    Steal all the cattle,
    Rattle-rattle, rattle-rattle,
    Bing.
    Boomlay, boomlay, boomlay, Boom...
    The Congo[3]

    His best-known poem, "The Congo," exemplified his revolutionary aesthetic of sound for sound's sake. It imitates the pounding of the drums in the rhythms and in onomatopoeic nonsense words. At parts, the poem ceases to use conventional words when representing the chants of Congo's indigenous people, relying just on sound alone.

    Lindsay's extensive correspondence with the poet W. B. Yeats details his intentions of reviving the musical qualities of poetry as they were practiced by the ancient Greeks. Because of his identity as a performance artist and his use of American midwestern themes, Lindsay became known in the 1910s as the "Prairie Troubador."

    In the final twenty years of his life, Lindsay was one of the best known poets in the U.S. His reputation enabled him to befriend, encourage and mentor other poets, such as Langston Hughes and Sara Teasdale. His poetry, though, lacked elements which encouraged the attention of academic scholarship, and, after his death, he became an obscure figure.
    Attitudes towards race

    This article possibly contains original research. Please improve it by verifying the claims made and adding inline citations. Statements consisting only of original research should be removed. (September 2007) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)

    Most contemporaries acknowledged Lindsay's intention to be an advocate for African-Americans.[4] This intention was particularly evident in the 1918 poem "The Jazz Birds", praising the war efforts of African-Americans during World War I, an issue to which the vast majority of the white US seemed blind. Additionally, W.E.B. Du Bois hailed Lindsay's story "The Golden-Faced People" for its insights into racism. Lindsay saw himself as anti-racist not only in his own writing but in his encouragement of a writer; he credited himself with discovering Langston Hughes, who, while working as a busboy at a Washington, D.C., was at the restaurant where Lindsay ate and gave Lindsay copies of his poems.[4]

    However, many contemporaries and later critics have contended over whether a couple of Lindsay's poems should be seen as homages to African and African-American music, as perpetuation of the "savage African" stereotype, or as both. DuBois, before reading and praising "the Golden-Faced People," wrote in a review of Lindsay's "Booker T. Washington Trilogy" that "Lindsay knows two things, and two things only, about Negroes: The beautiful rhythm of their music and the ugly side of their drunkards and outcasts. From this poverty of material he tries now and then to make a contribution to Negro literature." DuBois also criticized "The Congo," which has been the most persistent focus of the criticisms of racial stereotyping in Lindsay's work.

    Subtitled "A Study of the Negro Race" and beginning with a section titled "Their Basic Savagery", "The Congo" reflects the tensions within a relatively isolated and pastoral society suddenly confronted by the industrialized world. The poem was inspired by a sermon preached in October 1913 that detailed the drowning of a missionary in the Congo River; this event had drawn worldwide criticism, as had the colonial exploitation of the Congo under the government of Leopold II of Belgium. Lindsay defended the poem; in a letter to Joel Spingarn, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the NAACP, Lindsay wrote that "My 'Congo' and 'Booker T. Washington Trilogy' have both been denounced by the Colored people for reasons that I cannot fathom.... The third section of 'The Congo' is certainly as hopeful as any human being dare to be in regard to any race." Spingarn responded by acknowledging Lindsay's good intentions, but saying that Lindsay sometimes glamorized differences between people of African descent and people of other races, while many African-Americans wished to emphasize the "feelings and desires" that they held in common with others.[5]

    Similarly, critics in academia often portray Lindsay as a well-meaning but misguided primitivist in his representations of Africans and African Americans. One such critic, Rachel DuPlessis, argues that the poem, while perhaps meant to be "hopeful," actually "others" Africans as an inherently violent race. In the poem and in Lindsay's defenses of it, DuPlessis hears Lindsay warning white readers not to be "hoo-doo'd" or seduced by violent African "mumbo jumbo." This warning seems to suggest that white civilization has been "infected" by African violence; Lindsay thus, in effect, "blames blacks for white violence directed against them." [5] Conversely, Susan Gubar notes approvingly that "the poem contains lines blaming black violence on white imperialism." While acknowledging that the poem seems to have given its author and audiences an excuse to indulge in "'romantic racism' or 'slumming in slang,'" she also observes that Lindsay was "much more liberal than many of his poetic contemporaries," and that he seems to have intended a statement against the kind of racist violence perpetrated under Leopold in the Congo.[5]
    Later years
    Fame

    Lindsay's fame as a poet grew in the 1910s. Because Harriet Monroe showcased him with two other Illinois poets — Carl Sandburg and Edgar Lee Masters — his name became linked to theirs. The success of either of the other two, in turn, seemed to help the third.

    Edgar Lee Masters published a biography of Lindsay in 1935 (four years after its subject's death) entitled 'Vachel Lindsay: A Poet in America'.

    Lindsay himself indicated in the 1915 preface to "The Congo" that no less a figure than William Butler Yeats respected his work. Yeats felt they shared a concern for capturing the sound of the primitive and of singing in poetry. In 1915, Lindsay gave a poetry reading to President Woodrow Wilson and the entire Cabinet.[citation needed]
    Marriage, children and financial troubles

    Lindsay's private life was rife with disappointments, such as his unsuccessful courtship in 1914 of fellow poet Sara Teasdale before she married rich businessman Ernst Filsinger. While this itself may have caused Lindsay to become more concerned with money, his financial pressures would greatly increase later on.

    In 1924 he moved to Spokane, Washington, where he lived in room 1129 of the Davenport Hotel until 1929. On May 19, 1925, at age 45, he married 23-year-old Elizabeth Connor. The new pressure to support his considerably younger wife escalated as she bore him daughter Susan Doniphan Lindsay in May 1926 and son Nicholas Cave Lindsay in September 1927.

    Desperate for money, Lindsay undertook an exhausting string of readings throughout the East and Midwest from October 1928 through March 1929. During this time, Poetry magazine awarded him a lifetime achievement award of $500 (equivalent to about $6974 in 2012 dollars). In April 1929, Lindsay and his family moved to the house of his birth in Springfield, Illinois, an expensive undertaking. In that same year, coinciding with the Stock Market Crash of 1929, Lindsay published two more poetry volumes: The Litany of Washington Street and Every Soul A Circus. He gained money by doing odd jobs throughout but in general earned very little during his travels.
    Suicide

    Crushed by financial worry and in failing health from his six-month road trip, Lindsay sank into depression. On December 5, 1931, he committed suicide by drinking a bottle of Lysol. His last words were: "They tried to get me; I got them first!"[6]
    Legacy
    Literary

    Lindsay, a versatile and prolific writer and poet, helped to 'keep alive the appreciation of poetry as a spoken art' [7] whose 'poetry was said to 'abound in meter and rhymes and is no shredded prose'[8] had a traditional verse structure[9] and was described by a contemporary in 1924 as 'pungent phrases, clinging cadences, dramatic energy, comic thrust, lyric seriousness and tragic intensity.[10]Lindsay's biographer, Dennis Camp records that 'Lindsay's ideas on 'civic beauty and civic tolerance' ,were published in 1912 in his broadside ' The Gospel of Beauty' and that later,in 1915, Lindsay published the first American study of film as an art form, 'The Art of The Moving Picture and notes on Lindsay's tombstone is recorded a single word, 'Poet'.[11]
    Archives etc

    Today the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency helps to maintain the Vachel Lindsay House at 603 South Fifth Street in Springfield, the site of Lindsay's birth and death. The agency has donated the home to the state, which then closed it to restore the home at a cost of $1.5 million. As of October 8, 2014, the site is now again open to the public giving full guided tours for those who choose to ring the bell on Thursday to Sunday, from 1 to 5 pm. Lindsay's grave lies in Oak Ridge Cemetery. The bridge crossing the midpoint of Lake Springfield, built in 1934, is named in Lindsay's honor.[12]

    The massive Vachel Lindsay Archive resides at the Albert and Shirley Small Special Collections Library at the University of Virginia, and comprises his personal papers, manuscripts of his works, correspondence, photographs, artworks, printing blocks, books from his personal library, and a comprehensive collection of books by and about Lindsay. The Archives and Special Collections at Amherst College holds a small collection of manuscripts and other items sent by Lindsay to Eugenia Graham.
    Selected works

    "Abraham Lincoln Walks at Midnight"
    "An Indian Summer Day on the Prairie"
    "A Rhyme About an Electrical Advertising Sign"
    "A Sense of Humor"
    "Bryan, Bryan, Bryan, Bryan"
    "The Dandelion"
    "Drying Their Wings"
    "Euclid"
    "Factory Windows are Always Broken"
    "The Flower-Fed Buffaloes"
    "General William Booth Enters Into Heaven" — the American Classical Composer Charles Ives would write music to this poem (with a couple of additional text alterations) shortly after its publication
    "In Praise of Johnny Appleseed"
    "The Kallyope Yell" — see calliope for references
    "The Leaden-Eyed"
    "Love and Law"
    "The Mouse That Gnawed the Oak Tree Down"
    "The North Star Whispers to the Blacksmith's Son"
    "On the Garden Wall"
    "The Prairie Battlements"
    The Golden Book of Springfield
    "Prologue to "Rhymes to be Traded for Bread" "
    "The Congo: A Study of the Negro Race"
    "The Eagle That is Forgotten"
    "The Firemen's Ball"
    "The Rose of Midnight"
    "This Section is a Christmas Tree"
    "To Gloriana"
    "What Semiramis Said"
    "What the Ghost of the Gambler Said"
    "Why I Voted the Socialist Ticket"
    "Written for a Musician"

    References and notes

    Solbert, Oscar N.; Newhall, Beaumont; Card, James G., eds. (April 1953). "Vachel Lindsey on Film" (PDF). Image, Journal of Photography of George Eastman House. Rochester, N.Y.: International Museum of Photography at George Eastman House Inc. 2 (4): 23–24. Retrieved 26 June 2014.
    "A modern troubadour". The Independent. Dec 28, 1914. Retrieved July 28, 2012.
    "The Congo and Other Poems, by Vachel Lindsay". Gutenberg.org. Retrieved 2015-03-10.
    Ward, John Chapman Ward: "Vachel Lindsay Is 'Lying Low'", College Literature 12 (1985): 233–45)
    "Race Criticism of "The Congo"". English.illinois.edu. Retrieved 2015-03-10.
    Masters, Edgar Lee (1935). Vachel Lindsay : A Poet in America. p. 361. ISBN 978-0819602398.
    Reading list -'Biography, Vachel Lindsay'-Poetry Foundation.org , Chicago 2015
    Howells, William Dean 'Harpers' Magazine , Sept. 1915
    'Biography of Vachel Lindsay' Poetry Foundation.org , Chicago 2015
    Van Doren, Carl 'Many Minds' Knopf, New York 1924
    Camp, Dennis Dr 'Biography in Brief' Vachel Lindsay Association (est 1946), Springfield US

    http://historiccommissions.springfie...dsayBridge.asp

    External links
    Wikiquote has quotations related to: Vachel Lindsay

    Vachel Lindsay Association website- biography, essays, works
    Profile of Vachel Linsay from PBS's "I Hear America Singing" program, hosted by Thomas Hampson
    Vachel Lindsay Collection, Amherst College Archives and Special Collections
    Entry on Vachel Lindsay from Anthology of Modern American Poetry
    Works by Vachel Lindsay at Project Gutenberg
    Works by or about Vachel Lindsay at Internet Archive
    Works by Vachel Lindsay at LibriVox (public domain audiobooks)
    "The Chinese Nightingale"
    "The Congo and Other Poems by Vachel Lindsay"
    Vachel Lindsay at Library of Congress Authorities, with 80 catalog records
    Vachel Lindsay Collection - Harry Ransom Center Digital Collections

    Authority control

    WorldCat Identities VIAF: 9889931 LCCN: n79148281 ISNI: 0000 0001 1037 7221 GND: 118780069 SUDOC: 030306701 BNF: cb12174978f (data) MusicBrainz: 0e5f0876-22ac-46c8-a768-c419a1b8c2f2 BNE: XX1000508 IATH: w6xk8f3t

    Categories:

    American male poetsWriters from Springfield, IllinoisPeople with epilepsySuicides by poisonPoets who committed suicideSchool of the Art Institute of Chicago alumniHiram College alumni1879 births1931 deathsSuicides in IllinoisPeople associated with the Dil Pickle ClubMale suicides

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    My father- "Take pride in who you are and where you came from. Life is hard, often fighting is the only option!"
    Ernest Hemingway- “In order to write about life, you must first live it.”
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    The Coyote
    - Poem by Charles Badger Clark

    Trailing the last gleam after,
    In the valleys emptied of light,
    Ripples a whimsical laughter
    Under the wings of the night.
    Mocking the faded west airily,
    Meeting the little bats merrily,
    Over the mesas it shrills
    To the red moon on the hills.

    Mournfully rising and waning,
    Far through the moon-silvered land
    Wails a weird voice of complaining
    Over the thorns and the sand.
    Out of blue silences eerily.
    On to the black mountains wearily,
    Till the dim desert is crossed,
    Wanders the cry, and is lost.

    Here by the fire's ruddy streamers,
    Tired with our hopes and our fears,
    We inarticulate dreamers
    Hark to the song of our years.
    Up to the brooding divinity
    Far in that sparkling infinity
    Cry our despair and delight,
    Voice of the Western night!
    Charles Badger Clark
    My father- "Take pride in who you are and where you came from. Life is hard, often fighting is the only option!"
    Ernest Hemingway- “In order to write about life, you must first live it.”
    http://www.lindleypoetry.com/category/a-poem-a-day/

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    While History's Muse
    by Thomas Moore


    While History's Muse the memorial was keeping
    Of all that the dark hand of Destiny weaves,
    Beside her the Genius of Erin stood weeping,
    For hers was the story that blotted the leaves.
    But oh! how the tear in her eyelids grew bright,
    When, after whole pages of sorrow and shame,
    She saw History write,
    With a pencil of light
    That illumed the whole volume, her Wellington's name.

    "Yet still the last crown of thy toils is remaining,
    The grandest, the purest, even thou hast yet known;
    Though proud was thy task, other nations unchaining,
    Far prouder to heal the deep wounds of thy own.
    At the foot of that throne, for whose weal thou hast stood,
    Go, plead for the land that first cradled thy fame,
    And, bright o'er the flood
    Of her tears, and her blood,
    Let the rainbow of Hope be her Wellington's name."
    Last edited by Tyr-Ziu Saxnot; 11-08-2017 at 09:11 AM.
    My father- "Take pride in who you are and where you came from. Life is hard, often fighting is the only option!"
    Ernest Hemingway- “In order to write about life, you must first live it.”
    http://www.lindleypoetry.com/category/a-poem-a-day/

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    An Old Man's Winter Night
    Poem by Robert Frost


    All out of doors looked darkly in at him
    Through the thin frost, almost in separate stars,
    That gathers on the pane in empty rooms.
    What kept his eyes from giving back the gaze
    Was the lamp tilted near them in his hand.
    What kept him from remembering what it was
    That brought him to that creaking room was age.
    He stood with barrels round him -- at a loss.
    And having scared the cellar under him
    In clomping there, he scared it once again
    In clomping off; -- and scared the outer night,
    Which has its sounds, familiar, like the roar
    Of trees and crack of branches, common things,
    But nothing so like beating on a box.
    A light he was to no one but himself
    Where now he sat, concerned with he knew what,
    A quiet light, and then not even that.
    He consigned to the moon, such as she was,
    So late-arising, to the broken moon
    As better than the sun in any case
    For such a charge, his snow upon the roof,
    His icicles along the wall to keep;
    And slept. The log that shifted with a jolt
    Once in the stove, disturbed him and he shifted,
    And eased his heavy breathing, but still slept.
    One aged man -- one man -- can't keep a house,
    A farm, a countryside, or if he can,
    It's thus he does it of a winter night.
    ----- Robert Frost
    My father- "Take pride in who you are and where you came from. Life is hard, often fighting is the only option!"
    Ernest Hemingway- “In order to write about life, you must first live it.”
    http://www.lindleypoetry.com/category/a-poem-a-day/

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    Reluctance
    --by Robert Frost

    OUT through the fields and the woods
    And over the walls I have wended;
    I have climbed the hills of view
    And looked at the world, and descended;
    I have come by the highway home,
    And lo, it is ended.

    The leaves are all dead on the ground,
    Save those that the oak is keeping
    To ravel them one by one
    And let them go scraping and creeping
    Out over the crusted snow,
    When others are sleeping.

    And the dead leaves lie huddled and still,
    No longer blown hither and thither;
    The last lone aster is gone;
    The flowers of the witch-hazel wither;
    The heart is still aching to seek,
    But the feet question ‘Whither?’

    Ah, when to the heart of man
    Was it ever less than a treason
    To go with the drift of things,
    To yield with a grace to reason,
    And bow and accept the end
    Of a love or a season?

    Reluctance is about man’s unwillingness to accept life as it flows – with its disappointments. The poet having wandered over fields and walls (suggesting civilization) and hills and woods (suggestive of wilderness) is on his way back home. At a more philosophical level, he is saying that he has seen and experienced all aspects of life and is now home, that is, his journey through life has come to a close. ‘Climbing hills’ refers to the difficulties faced in life and ‘descended’ perhaps to the compromises one has to make in life.

    The mood of the poem is pensive. The use of words – ended, dead, lone, gone, wither, aching – all go to create this mood. His melancholy mood is reflected in nature too – the trees are barren, the snow is crusted, the dead leaves lie in heaps and the last of the blossoms are withered.

    His mood lightens as he speaks of the Oak, pictured perhaps as naughty for it is ‘keeping’ its leaves to let them go down one by one ‘when others are sleeping’. But this does nothing to uplift his mood.
    My father- "Take pride in who you are and where you came from. Life is hard, often fighting is the only option!"
    Ernest Hemingway- “In order to write about life, you must first live it.”
    http://www.lindleypoetry.com/category/a-poem-a-day/

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    Aubade
    ---- by Phillip Larkin

    I work all day, and get half-drunk at night.
    Waking at four to soundless dark, I stare.
    In time the curtain-edges will grow light.
    Till then I see what's really always there:
    Unresting death, a whole day nearer now,
    Making all thought impossible but how
    And where and when I shall myself die.
    Arid interrogation: yet the dread
    Of dying, and being dead,
    Flashes afresh to hold and horrify.
    The mind blanks at the glare. Not in remorse
    - The good not done, the love not given, time
    Torn off unused - nor wretchedly because
    An only life can take so long to climb
    Clear of its wrong beginnings, and may never;
    But at the total emptiness for ever,
    The sure extinction that we travel to
    And shall be lost in always. Not to be here,
    Not to be anywhere,
    And soon; nothing more terrible, nothing more true.

    This is a special way of being afraid
    No trick dispels. Religion used to try,
    That vast, moth-eaten musical brocade
    Created to pretend we never die,
    And specious stuff that says No rational being
    Can fear a thing it will not feel, not seeing
    That this is what we fear - no sight, no sound,
    No touch or taste or smell, nothing to think with,
    Nothing to love or link with,
    The anasthetic from which none come round.

    And so it stays just on the edge of vision,
    A small, unfocused blur, a standing chill
    That slows each impulse down to indecision.
    Most things may never happen: this one will,
    And realisation of it rages out
    In furnace-fear when we are caught without
    People or drink. Courage is no good:
    It means not scaring others. Being brave
    Lets no one off the grave.
    Death is no different whined at than withstood.

    Slowly light strengthens, and the room takes shape.
    It stands plain as a wardrobe, what we know,
    Have always known, know that we can't escape,
    Yet can't accept. One side will have to go.
    Meanwhile telephones crouch, getting ready to ring
    In locked-up offices, and all the uncaring
    Intricate rented world begins to rouse.
    The sky is white as clay, with no sun.
    Work has to be done.
    Postmen like doctors go from house to house.

    © by owner. provided at no charge for educational purposes
    My father- "Take pride in who you are and where you came from. Life is hard, often fighting is the only option!"
    Ernest Hemingway- “In order to write about life, you must first live it.”
    http://www.lindleypoetry.com/category/a-poem-a-day/

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    Bells For John Whiteside's Daughter

    There was such speed in her little body,
    And such lightness in her footfall,
    It is no wonder her brown study
    Astonishes us all.

    Her wars were bruited in our high window.
    We looked among orchard trees and beyond
    Where she took arms against her shadow,
    Or harried unto the pond

    The lazy geese, like a snow cloud
    Dripping their snow on the green grass,
    Tricking and stopping, sleepy and proud,
    Who cried in goose, Alas,

    For the tireless heart within the little
    Lady with rod that made them rise
    From their noon apple-dreams and scuttle
    Goose-fashion under the skies!

    But now go the bells, and we are ready,
    In one house we are sternly stopped
    To say we are vexed at her brown study,
    Lying so primly propped.
    by John Crowe Ransom

    © by owner. provided at no charge for educational purposes
    **************************

    .
    Study Guide Prepared by Michael J. Cummings..© 2010
    .
    Type of Work and Date of Publication

    ......."Bells for John Whiteside's Daughter" is an elegy, a poem that reflects on a person's death or on death in general. It consists of five stanzas, each with four lines. Alfred A. Knopf, Inc., published the poem in New York in 1924 in a collection of Ransom's poems, Chills and Fever.

    Setting

    .......The action probably takes place in the rural South. (Ransom was born in the small town of Pulaski, Tennessee.) The time is the early 1920s.

    Summary of the Poem

    .......The death of a lively little girl shocks neighbors who used to observe her while she was outdoors. She was always so energetic and so full of noise and mischief. Playfully, she would make war against her shadow and sometimes rouse sleepy geese—which were no doubt dreaming of eating apples from a nearby orchard—and chase them across the green grass and into a pond. When the funeral bells toll, the neighbors are “vexed" (line 19) that a child who was only recently so full of life is now a silent, “primly propped" (line 20) corpse.
    Theme

    .......The theme of the poem is that an unexpected death jolts people into confronting the fragility of life and the inscrutability of the forces that end life. Although they may mourn the loss of the spirited presence on the grass outdoors, they also mourn for themselves in the realization that they too are mortal and that they too will one day become a “brown study" (lines 3, 23). As John Donne wrote in Meditation 17 of Devotions Upon Emergent Occasions:

    [S]end not to know
    For whom the bell tolls,
    It tolls for thee.

    What Is a Brown Study?

    ......."Brown study" (lines 3 and 23) is term that means a state of deep thought, like that of the figure depicted in Rodin's most famous sculpture, The Thinker.
    There is some controversy in what some think callousness in the way the author presents the death of this child. Yet others see a comparison made in that tho' the author cites what may be personal disdain for some of her actions, he notes the sorrow of a young and promising young life lost too soon!
    Was it intended, this comparison or a subconscious act in his composing?
    Regardless, this poem clearly shows his great poetic talent, IMHO. TYR
    Last edited by Tyr-Ziu Saxnot; 11-19-2017 at 10:06 AM.
    My father- "Take pride in who you are and where you came from. Life is hard, often fighting is the only option!"
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    http://www.lindleypoetry.com/category/a-poem-a-day/

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    ROSE AYLMER
    by Walter Savage Landor

    Ah, what avails the sceptred race!
    Ah, what the form divine!
    What every virtue, every grace!
    Rose Aylmer, all were thine.

    Rose Aylmer, whom these wakeful eyes
    May weep, but never see,
    A night of memories and sighs
    I consecrate to thee.
    Walter Savage Landor

    ************************************************** **********
    Walter Savage Landor
    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    Walter Savage Landor (30 January 1775 – 17 September 1864) was an English writer and poet. His best known works were the prose Imaginary Conversations, and the poem Rose Aylmer, but the critical acclaim he received from contemporary poets and reviewers was not matched by public popularity. As remarkable as his work was, it was equalled by his rumbustious character and lively temperament.
    Walter Savage Landor

    Contents

    1 Summary of his work
    2 Summary of his life
    3 Early life
    4 South Wales and Gebir
    5 Napoleonic Wars and Count Julian
    6 Llanthony and marriage
    7 Florence and Imaginary Conversations
    8 England, Pericles and journalism
    9 Final Tragedies and return to Italy
    10 Review of Landor's work by Swinburne
    11 In popular culture
    12 See also
    13 Further reading
    14 References
    15 External links

    Summary of his work

    In a long and active life of eighty-nine years Landor produced a considerable amount of work in various genres. This can perhaps be classified into four main areas—prose, lyric poetry, political writings including epigrams, and Latin. His prose and poetry have received most acclaim, but critics are divided in their preference between them and he is now often described as 'a poet's poet' and author of perhaps the greatest very short poems in English,[1] 'Some of the best poets, Yeats, Ezra Pound and Robert Frost among them, steered by his lights'.[2] Landor's prose is best represented by the Imaginary Conversations. He drew on a vast array of historical characters from Greek philosophers to contemporary writers and composed conversations between pairs of characters that covered areas of philosophy, politics, romance and many other topics. These exercises proved a more successful application of Landor's natural ability for writing dialogue than his plays. Although these have many quotable passages the overall effect suffered because he never learned the art of drama.

    Landor wrote much sensitive and beautiful poetry. The love poems were inspired by a succession of female romantic ideals – Ione, Ianthe, Rose Aylmer and Rose Paynter. Equally sensitive are his "domestic" poems about his sister and his children.

    In the course of his career Landor wrote for various journals on a range of topics that interested him from anti-Pitt politics to the unification of Italy. He was also a master of the epigram which he used to good effect and wrote satirically to avenge himself on politicians and other people who upset him.

    Landor wrote over three hundred Latin poems, political tracts and essays, but these have generally been ignored in the collections of his work. Landor found Latin useful for expressing things that might otherwise have been "indecent or unattractive" as he put it and as a cover for libellous material. Fellow classical scholars of the time put Landor's Latin work on a par with his English writing.
    Summary of his life

    Landor's life is an catalogue of incidents and misfortunes, many of them self-inflicted but some no fault of his own. His headstrong nature and hot-headed temperament, combined with a complete contempt for authority, landed him in a great deal of trouble over the years. By a succession of bizarre actions, he was successively thrown out of Rugby school, Oxford and from time to time from the family home. In the course of his life he came into conflict deliberately with his political enemies – the supporters of Pitt – but inadvertently with a succession of Lord Lieutenants, Bishops, Lord Chancellors, Spanish officers, Italian Grand Dukes, nuncio legatos, lawyers and other minor officials. He usually gained the upper hand, if not with an immediate hilarious response, then possibly many years later with a biting epithet.

    Landor's writing often landed him on the wrong side of the laws of libel, and even his refuge in Latin proved of no avail in Italy. Many times his friends had to come to his aid in smoothing the ruffled feathers of his opponents or in encouraging him to moderate his behaviour. His friends were equally active in the desperate attempts to get his work published, where he offended or felt cheated by a succession of publishers who found his work either unsellable or unpublishable. He was repeatedly involved in legal disputes with his neighbours whether in England or Italy and Dickens' characterisation of him in Bleak House revolves around such a dispute over a gate between Boythorn and Sir Leicester Dedlock. Fate dealt with him unfairly when he tried to put into practice his bold and generous ideas to improve the lot of man, or when he was mistaken at one time for an agent of the Prince of Wales and at another for a tramp. His stormy marriage with his long-suffering wife resulted in a long separation, and then when she had finally taken him back to a series of sad attempts to escape.

    And yet Landor was described as "the kindest and gentlest of men". He collected a coterie of friends who went to great lengths to help him as "his loyalty and liberality of heart were as inexhaustible as his bounty and beneficence of hand". It was said that "praise and encouragement, deserved or undeserved, came more readily to his lips than challenge or defiance". The numerous accounts of those with whom he came in contact reveal that he was fascinating company and he dined out on his wit and knowledge for a great part of his life. Landor's powerful sense of humour, expressed in his tremendous and famous laughs no doubt contributed to and yet helped assuage the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune. "His passionate compassion, his bitter and burning pity for all wrongs endured in all the world, found outlet in his lifelong defence of tyrannicide. His tender and ardent love of children, of animals and of flowers makes fragrant alike the pages of his writing and the records of his life".[3]
    Early life
    Walter Savage Landor ILN.jpg

    Walter Savage Landor was born in Warwick, England, the eldest son of Dr Walter Landor, a physician, and his second wife, Elizabeth Savage. His birthplace, Eastgate House, is now occupied by The King's High School For Girls. His father inherited estates at Rugeley, Staffordshire and his mother was heiress to estates at Ipsley Court and Bishop's Tachbrook in Warwickshire. Landor as the eldest son was heir to these properties and looked forward to a life of prosperity. The family tradition was Whig in reaction to George III and Pitt, and although Landor's brother Robert was the only other member to achieve fame as a writer there was a strong literary tradition in the family.

    After attending a school at Knowle, he was sent to Rugby School under Dr James, but took offence at the headmaster's review of his work and was removed at Dr James' request. Years later, Landor included references to James in Latin in Simonidea with a mixture of praise and criticism and was subsequently reconciled with him. He then studied privately with Rev. William Langley, vicar of Fenny Bentley and headmaster of Ashbourne Grammar School. Langley was later mentioned in the Imaginary Conversation of Isaak Walton. Landor's temperament and violent opinions caused embarrassment at home and he was usually asked to absent himself when guests were expected. On one occasion he netted and threw in the river a local farmer who objected to his fishing on his property. In 1793 he entered Trinity College, Oxford where he showed rebelliousness in his informal dress and was known as a "mad Jacobin" since he was taken with ideas of French republicanism. His tutor Dr Benwell was impressed by him, but unfortunately his stay was short-lived. In 1794 he fired a gun at the windows of a Tory whose late night revels disturbed him and for whom he had an aversion. He was rusticated for a year, and, although the authorities were willing to condone the offence, he refused to return. The affair led to a quarrel with his father in which Landor expressed his intention of leaving home for ever.[4]

    Landor went to Tenby in Wales where he had a love affair with a local girl, Nancy Evans, for whom he wrote some of his earliest love poems referring to her as "Ione". Landor's father disapproved and he removed for a time to London, lodging near Portland Place. Ione subsequently had a child who died in infancy. In 1795 Landor brought out a small volume of English and Latin verse in three books entitled The Poems of Walter Savage Landor. Landor also wrote an anonymous Moral Epistle in pamphlet form of nineteen pages, respectfully dedicated to Earl Stanhope. It was a satire in heroic verse condemning Pitt for trying to suppress liberal influences. Although Landor subsequently disowned these "'prentice works", Swinburne wrote "No poet at the age of twenty ever had more vigour of style and fluency of verse; nor perhaps has any ever shown such masterly command of epigram and satire, made vivid and vital by the purest enthusiasm and most generous indignation."[5]

    Landor was reconciled with his family through the efforts of his friend Dorothea Lyttelton. He later told Forster that he would have married Dorothea if he were financially independent. He did not enter a profession – he did not want the law, and no more did the army want him. His father allowed him £150 a year, and he was free to live at home or not, as he pleased.[4]
    South Wales and Gebir

    Landor settled in South Wales, returning home to Warwick for short visits. It was at Swansea that he became friendly with the family of Lord Aylmer, including his sister, Rose, whom Landor later immortalized in the poem, "Rose Aylmer". It was she who lent him "The Progress of Romance" by the Gothic author Clara Reeve.[4] In this he found the story "The History of Charoba, Queen of Egypt", which inspired his poem "Gebir". Rose Aylmer sailed to India with an aunt in 1798, and two years later died of cholera.

    Ah, what avails the sceptred race,

    Ah, what the form divine!

    What every virtue, every grace!

    Rose Aylmer, all were thine.

    Rose Aylmer, whom these wakeful eyes

    May weep, but never see,

    A night of memories and of sighs

    I consecrate to thee.

    Robert Southey
    Pitt facing Fox across St Stephen's Chapel

    In 1798 Landor published "Gebir" the work which established his reputation. "Gebir" tells the story of a prince of Spain who falls in love with his enemy Queen Charoba of Egypt. Southey, reviewed "Gebir" calling it "some of the most exquisite poetry in the language" and was keen to discover the anonymous author. Sidney Colvin wrote "For loftiness of thought and language together, there are passages in Gebir that will bear comparison with Milton" and "nowhere in the works of Wordsworth or Coleridge do we find anything resembling Landor's peculiar qualities of haughty splendour and massive concentration".[6] John Forster wrote "Style and treatment constitute the charm of it. The vividness with which everything in it is presented to sight as well as through the wealth of its imagery, its moods of language – these are characteristics pre-eminent in Gebir".[7] Gifford, on the other hand, who was ever a harsh critic of Landor described it as A jumble of incomprehensible trash... the most vile and despicable effusion of a mad and muddy brain....[8]

    For the next three years Landor led an unsettled life, spent mainly in London. He became a friend of the classics scholar Dr Samuel Parr who lived at Hatton near Warwick and who appreciated Landor as a person and a Latin writer.[4] Landor favoured Latin as a way of expressing playful material without exposing it to public view "Siquid forte iocosius cuivis in mentem veniat, id, vernacule, puderet, non-enim tantummodo in luce agitur sed etiam in publico."[9] Latin also had the advantage of being exempt from libel laws in England. Parr introduced Landor to Robert Adair, party organiser for Charles James Fox, who enlisted Landor to write in The Morning Post and The Courier against the ministry of Pitt. Landor published "Poems from the Arabic and Persian" in 1800 and a pamphlet of Latin verses. During this time he met Isaac Mocatta who stimulated his interest in art and exercised a moderating influence, but Mocatta died 1801. In 1802 Landor went to Paris where he saw Napoleon at close quarters, and this was enough to put him off the idea of French republicanism. In the same year he published "Poetry by the Author of Gebir" which included the narrative poems Crysaor and The Phocaeans. Colvin considered Crysaor Landor's finest piece of narrative in blank verse.

    Landor's brother Robert helped with corrections and additions to "Gebir" and the second edition appeared in 1803. About the same time Landor published the whole poem in Latin, which did little to increase readership but appealed to Parr and was considered by Swinburne to be comparable with the English version in might and melody of line, and for power and perfection of language.

    Landor travelled the country in constant debt, spending much time at Bath. Here he met Sophia Jane Swift, who was already engaged to her cousin Godwin Swifte, whom she married despite Landor's ardent entreaties in 1803. He called her Ianthe and wrote some of his most beautiful love poems to her. His father died in 1805, which put him in possession of an independent fortune and he settled in Bath, living in grand style.[4] In 1806 he published "Simonidea" which included poems to Ianthe and Ione. It also included "Gunlaug and Helga" a narrative poem from William Herbert's "Select Icelandic poems". At Bristol in 1808 he caught up with Southey, whom he had missed on a trip to the Lake District in the previous year, and the mutual appreciation of the two poets led to a warm friendship. He also wrote a work "The Dun Cow" which was written in defence of his friend Parr who had been attacked in an anonymous work "Guy's Porridge Pot", which Landor was fierce to deny was any work of his.
    Napoleonic Wars and Count Julian

    In 1808 he had an heroic impulse to take part in the Peninsular War. At the age of thirty-three, he left England for Spain as a volunteer to serve in the national army against Napoleon. He landed at Corunna, introduced himself to the British envoy, offered 10,000 reals for the relief of Venturada, and set out to join the army of General Joaquín Blake y Joyes. He was disappointed not to take part in any real action and found himself giving support at Bilbao where he was nearly captured. A couple of months later the Convention of Sintra brought an end to the campaign and Landor returned to England. The Spanish Government offered its thanks to him, and King Ferdinand appointed him a Colonel in the Spanish Army. However, when the King restored the Jesuits Landor returned his commission.[4] When he returned to England, he joined Wordsworth and Southey in denouncing the Convention of Sintra, which had excited general indignation. In 1809 Landor wrote "Three letters to Don Francisco Riquelme" giving him the benefit of his wisdom as a participant in the war. He wrote an ode in Latin to Gustavus IV of Sweden and wrote to press under various pseudonyms. In 1810 he wrote "a brave and good letter to Sir Francis Burdett."

    The Spanish experience provided inspiration for the tragedy of Count Julian, based on Julian, count of Ceuta. Although this demonstrated Landor's distinctive style of writing, it suffered from his failure to study the art of drama and so made little impression. The plot is difficult to follow unless the story is previously known and concerns a complicated situation after the defeat of the last Visigoth King of Spain. It carries the moral tone of crime propagating crime. Southey undertook to arrange publication and eventually got it published by Murray in 1812, after an initial refusal by Longmans which led Landor to burn another tragedy "Ferranti and Giulio".[4] Thomas de Quincey later wrote of the work "Mr Landor is probably the one man in Europe that has adequately conceived the situation, the stern self-dependency and monumental misery of Count Julian". Swinburne described it as "the sublimest poem published in our language, between the last masterpiece of Milton (Samson Agonistes) and the first masterpiece of Shelley, (Prometheus Unbound) one equally worthy to stand unchallenged beside either for poetic perfection as well as moral majesty. The superhuman isolation of agony and endurance which encircles and exalts the hero is in each case expressed with equally appropriate magnificence of effect. The style of Count Julian, if somewhat deficient in dramatic ease and the fluency of natural dialogue, has such might and purity and majesty of speech as elsewhere we find only in Milton so long and so steadily sustained."
    Llanthony and marriage
    Llanthony—Landor's estate

    Before going to Spain, he had been looking for a property and settled on Llanthony Abbey in Monmouthshire, a ruined Benedictine abbey. He sold the property at Rugeley which he inherited from his father, and persuaded his mother to sell her Tachbrook estate to contribute to the purchase cost. On his return from Spain he was busy finalising these matters. The previous owner had erected some buildings in the ruins of the ancient abbey, but an Act of Parliament, passed in 1809, was needed to allow Landor to pull down these buildings and construct a house, (which was never finished). He wanted to become a model country gentleman, planting trees, importing sheep from Spain, and improving the roads.[4] There is still an avenue of trees in the area known as "Landor's Larches" and many old chestnuts have been dated back to his time.[10]

    In 1811 he went to a ball in Bath and seeing a pretty girl exclaimed "That's the nicest girl in the room, and I'll marry her". She was Julia Thuillier, the daughter of an impoverished Swiss banker who had an unsuccessful business at Banbury and had gone to Spain, leaving his family at Bath.[4] They married at St James Church Bath on 24 May 1811 and settled for a while at Llanthony Abbey. Landor had a visit from Southey, after he sent him a letter describing the idylls of country life, including nightingales and glow-worms. However the idyll was not to last long as for the next three years Landor was worried by the combined vexation of neighbours and tenants, lawyers and lords-lieutenant and even the Bishop of St David's, while at the same time he tried to publish an article on Fox, a response to a sycophantic piece by John Bernard Trotter, which was condemned by the prospective publisher John Murray as libellous and damned by Canning and Gifford.

    His troubles with the neighbours stemmed from petty squabbles, many arising from his headstrong and impetuous nature. He employed a solicitor one Charles Gabell, who saw him as a client to be milked. His trees were uprooted and his timber stolen. A man against whom he had to swear the peace drank himself to death, and he was accused of causing the misfortune and when he prosecuted a man for theft he was insulted by the defendant's counsel (whom he later "chastised" in his Latin poetry). He was fond of revenge through his verse, Latin or otherwise and gave his opinion of his lawyers in the following piece of doggerel.

    If the devil, a mighty old omnibus driver
    Saw an omnibus driving downhill to a river
    And saved any couple to share his own cab
    I really do think t'would be Gabell & Gabb.

    When the Bishop failed to reply to his letter offering to restore part of the priory Landor followed up saying "God alone is great enough for me to ask anything of twice". He wanted to become a magistrate and after a row with the Lord Lieutenant, the Duke of Beaufort, who was suspicious of his republican sympathies, he pursued the matter with the Lord Chancellor, Lord Eldon well known as a High Tory without success. He wasted much effort and money in noble attempts to improve the land, and to relieve the wretchedness and raise the condition of the poorer inhabitants. The final straw was when he let his farmland to one Betham who was incompetent and extravagant and paid no rent. After an expensive action to recover the debts from Betham he had had enough, and decided to leave the country, abandoning Llanthony to his creditors – which was principally his mother.[4]

    In 1814 Landor left England for Jersey, where he had a quarrel with his wife and set off for France on his own. Eventually she joined him at Tours as did his brother Robert. At Tours he met Francis George Hare, father of Augustus Hare and brother of Julius Hare who was to be of great help to him. Landor soon became dissatisfied with Tours and after tremendous conflicts with his landlady set off in September 1815 with his wife and brother on a tempestuous journey to Italy.[4]
    Florence and Imaginary Conversations
    Walter Savage Landor by William Fisher[11]
    Inner courtyard of Palazzo Medici-Riccardi
    Marguerite, Countess of Blessington. Painted by Thomas Lawrence in 1822.

    Landor and his wife finally settled at Como where they stayed for three years. Even here he had troubles for at the time Caroline of Brunswick, wife of the Prince Regent was living there and Landor was suspected of being an agent involved in watching her in case of divorce proceedings. In 1818 he insulted the authorities in a Latin poem directed against an Italian poet who had denounced England, not realising that the libel laws in Italy (unlike in England) applied to Latin writings as well as Italian. After threatening the regio delegato with a beating he was ordered to leave Como. In September he went to Genoa and Pisa. He finally settled at Florence in 1821. After two years in apartments in the Medici Palace, he settled with his wife and children at the Villa Castiglione. In this, the most important period in his literary career, he produced some of his best known works – the Imaginary Conversations.[4] It was at this time that Lady Blessington and her husband were living at Florence and became firm friends.

    The first two volumes of his Imaginary Conversations appeared in 1824[12] with a second edition in 1826; a third volume was added in 1828; and in 1829 the fourth and fifth volumes were published. Not until 1846 was a fresh instalment added, in the second volume of his collected and selected works.

    With these works, Landor acquired a high, but not wide literary reputation. He had various disputes with the authorities in Florence. The theft of some silver led to altercations with the police, whose interviews with tradesmen ended up defining him as a "dangerous man", and the eventual upshot was that the Grand Duke banished him from Florence. Subsequently, the Grand Duke took the matter good-naturedly, and ignored Landor's declaration that, as the authorities disliked his residence, he should reside there permanently. In 1829, Landor bought the Villa Gherardesca at Fiesole helped by a generous loan from Joseph Ablett of Llanbedr Hall, Denbighshire. Here he had a dispute with a neighbour about water rights, which led to a lawsuit and a challenge, although the English Consul Kirkup succeeded in arranging the point of honour satisfactorily. Landor was visited by William Hazlitt and Leigh Hunt, and was on intimate terms with Charles Armitage Brown.[4] It was at this time he became acquainted with Edward John Trelawny who he included in volume IV of Imaginary Conversations. His mother, with whom he had always corresponded affectionately, died in October 1829 and his cousin Walter Landor of Rugeley took over the management of the estate in Wales. Landor was happy at Villa Gherardesca for several years, writing books, playing with his children whom he adored and with the nightingales, and planting his gardens. He had many visitors, most notably in 1829 Jane Swift (Ianthe) now a widow, who inspired him to write poetry again. Later came Henry Crabb Robinson with whom he got on extremely well. In 1831 he published a volume combining Gebir, Count Julian and Other Poems (including 31 to Ianthe). Although this sold only 40 copies, Landor was unconcerned as he was working on "High and Low Life in Italy". This last work he sent to Crabb Robinson for publication but he had difficulties with publishers and it did not appear until 1837.

    In 1832 Ablett persuaded him visit England, where he met many old friends.[4] He saw Ianthe at Brighton and met Lord Wenlock. He also visited his family in Staffordshire – his brother Charles was rector of Colton, and his cousin Walter Landor of Rugeley was trying to deal with the complex business of Llanthony. He visited Charles Lamb at Enfield, Samuel Coleridge at Highgate, and Julius Hare at Cambridge. He went with Ablett to the Lake District and saw Southey and Coleridge.

    On returning to Fiesole he found his children out of hand and obtained a German governess for them. Back in Italy he met Richard Monckton Milnes who later wrote about him.[13] He was visited by Ralph Waldo Emerson and worked on the conversations which led to the volumes upon "Shakespeare's Examinations for Deer Stealing", "Pericles and Aspasia", and the "Pentameron". Lady Blessington sold "Shakespeare" for him. In 1835 Ianthe visited again, and brought her half-sister, Mrs Paynter, with her. Landor's wife Julia became jealous, although she already had a younger lover, and their difference of opinion ended in a complete separation.
    England, Pericles and journalism

    Landor was 60 by now and went to Lucca where he finished "Pericles and Aspasia" and in September returned to England alone in the autumn. He had an income of about £600 per annum from properties in England, but when he left Italy he made over £400 of the share to his wife, and transferred the villa and farms at Fiesole to his son Arnold absolutely. His income was now £200 a year and he was in financial difficulties. He stayed with Ablett at Llanbedr for three months, spent winter at Clifton and returned to him afterwards, when Ablett persuaded him to write "Literary Hours" which was published the next year.[4] "Pericles and Aspasia", which was to become one of his most appreciated works was published in March 1836. It is in the form of an Imaginary Conversation and describes the development of Aspasia's romance with Pericles, who died in the Peloponnesian War, told in a series of letters to a friend Cleone. The work is one of Landor's most joyous works and is singled out by contemporary critics as an introduction to Landor at his best. On one occasion Landor was travelling to Clifton incognito and chatting to a fellow traveller when the traveller, John Sterling, observed that his strange paradoxical conversation sounded like one of Landor's Imaginary Conversations. Landor covered his retreat, but later became acquainted formally with Sterling.

    Also in 1836, Landor met John Forster who became his biographer, having become friends after Forster's review of his "Shakespeare". Later that year went to Heidelberg in Germany hoping to meet his children, but was disappointed. He wrote more imaginary conversations including one between Lord Eldon and Escombe. When a lady friend rebuked him for this on the basis that Eldon was now over eighty, Landor replied unmoved with the quip "The devil is older". He had several other publications that year besides Pericles, including "Letter from a Conservative", "A Satire on Satirists" which included a criticism of Wordsworth's failure to appreciate Southey, Alabiadas the Young Man, and "Terry Hogan", a satire on Irish priests. He wintered again at Clifton where Southey visited him. It is possible that Ianthe was living at Bristol, but the evidence is not clear, and in 1837 she went to Austria, where she remained for some years. After leaving Clifton, Landor travelled around and visited Armitage Brown at Plymouth. He established many friendships including John Kenyon and Sir William Napier. At the end of the year he published "Death of Clytemnestra" and "The Pentalogia", containing five of his finest shorter studies in dramatic poetry. The last piece to be published was "Pentameron".[4] Although this had no financial success it was much admired by his friends including Kenyon, Julius Hare, Crabb Robinson, Elizabeth Barrett Browning who said "some of the pages are too delicious to turn over", and Leigh Hunt who reckoned it Landor's masterpiece. In the spring of 1838 he took a house in Bath and wrote his three plays the "Andrea of Hungary", "Giovanna of Naples", and "Fra Rupert". These plays are in the form of a trilogy in the first of which Fra Rupert contrives the death of Andrea husband of Giovanna. Giovanna is suspected but acquitted in the second play. In the third play Fra Rupert is discovered. George Saintsbury described these as a historical novel thrown into conversational dramatic form. In 1839 Landor's attempts to publish the plays were caught up in a dispute between Bentley and Dickens and Forster which caused considerable delay. Again, although these plays, or "conversations in verse" did not succeed with the public, Landor gained warm admirers, many of whom were his personal friends. Southey's mind was giving way when he wrote a last letter to his friend in 1839, but he continued to mention Landor's name when generally incapable of mentioning any one. Landor wandered around the country again, frequently visiting London, where he usually stayed with Lady Blessington, whom he had known at Florence. Mrs Paynter, and her daughter Rose Paynter were at Bath and Landor's letters and verses to Rose are among his best works. Rose later married Charles Graves-Sawle of Restormel in Cornwall. Landor met Charles Dickens and they enjoyed each other's company despite the age difference. Landor greatly admired Dickens' works, and was especially moved by the character of Nell Trent (from The Old Curiosity Shop). Landor was affectionately adapted by Dickens as Lawrence Boythorn in Bleak House.[4] He was the godfather of Dickens's son Walter Landor Dickens. He also became introduced to Robert Browning who sent him a dedicated copy of his work.

    Landor received a visit from his son Arnold in 1842 and in that year wrote a long essay on Catullus for Forster who was editor of "Foreign Quarterly Review" and followed it up with The Idylls of Theocritus. Super was critical of the essays claiming "A more thoroughly disorganised work never fell from his pen".[14] In 1843 he mourned the death of his friend Southey and dedicated a poem in the Examiner. Landor was visited by his children Walter and Julia and published a poem to Julia in Blackwood's magazine.

    By that dejected city, Arno runs,
    Where Ugolino claspt his famisht sons.
    There wert thou born, my Julia! there thine eyes
    Return'd as bright a blue to vernal skies.
    And thence, my little wanderer! when the Spring
    Advanced, thee, too, the hours on silent wing
    Brought, while anemonies were quivering round,
    And pointed tulips pierced the purple ground,
    Where stood fair Florence: there thy voice first blest
    My ear, and sank like balm into my breast:
    For many griefs had wounded it, and more
    Thy little hands could lighten were in store.
    But why revert to griefs? Thy sculptured brow
    Dispels from mine its darkest cloud even now.
    And all that Rumour has announced of grace!
    I urge, with fevered breast, the four-month day.
    O! could I sleep to wake again in May."

    In the following year his daughter Julia returned and gave him a dog Pomero, who was a faithful companion for a long time. In the same year, he published a poem to Browning in the Morning Chronicle.

    Forster and Dickens used to visit Bath, to celebrate Landor's birthday and Charles I's execution on the same day. Forster helped Landor in publishing his plays and the 'Collected Works' in 1846, and was employed on The Examiner to which Landor frequently contributed on political and other subjects. Forster objected to the inclusion of some Latin poetry, and so Landor published his most important Latin work 'Poemata et Inscriptiones' separately in 1847.[4] This consisted of large additions to the main contents of two former volumes of idyllic, satiric, elegiac and lyric verse. One piece referred to George IV whose treatment of Caroline of Brunswick had been distasteful to Landor.

    Heic jacet,
    Qui ubique et semper jacebat
    Familiae pessimae homo pessimus
    Georgius Britanniae Rex ejus nominis IV
    Arca ut decet ampla et opipare ornata est
    Continet enim omnes Nerones.

    (Here lies a person who was always laying about all over the place – the worst member of the worst family – George the fourth of that name of Britain. It is suitable that the vault be large and excessively decorated as it contains all the Neros). Landor's distaste for the House of Hanover is more famously displayed in the doggerel that many do not realise is his composition.

    George the First was always reckoned
    Vile, but viler George the Second.
    And what mortal ever heard
    Any good of George the Third,
    But when from earth the Fourth descended
    God be praised the Georges ended

    In 1846 he also published the 'Hellenics', including the poems published under that title in the collected works, together with English translations of the Latin idyls. In this year he first met Eliza Lynn who was to become an outstanding novelist and journalist as Lynn Linton, and she became a regular companion in Bath. Now aged over seventy Landor was losing many of his old friends and becoming more frequently ill himself. On one occasion when staying with the Graves-Sawle he visited Exeter and sheltered in the rain on the doorstep of a local barrister James Jerwood. Jerwood mistook him for a tramp and drove him away. Landor's follow-up letter of abuse to the barrister is magnificent. In 1849 he wrote a well-known epitaph for himself on his 74th birthday.

    I strove with none, for none was worth my strife.

    Nature I loved, and, next to nature, Art;

    I warm'd both hands before the fire of Life;

    It sinks, and I am ready to depart.

    However he was leading an active social life. Tennyson met him in 1850 and recorded how while another guest fell downstairs and broke his arm, "Old Landor went on eloquently discoursing of Catullus and other Latin poets as if nothing had happened".[15] Thomas Carlyle visited him and wrote "He was really stirring company: a proud irascible, trenchant, yet generous, veracious, and very dignified old man".[15] In 1851 Landor expressed interest in Church reform with a pamphlet "Popery, British and Foreign", and Letters to Cardinal Wiseman. He published various other articles in The Examiner, Fraser's Magazine and other journals. During the year he learnt of the death of his beloved Ianthe and wrote in tribute to her.

    Sophia! whom I seldom call'd by name,
    And trembled when I wrote it; O my friend
    Severed so long from me! one morn I dreamt
    That we were walking hand in hand thro' paths
    Slippery with sunshine: after many years
    Had flown away, and seas and realms been crost,
    And much (alas how much!) by both endured
    We joined our hands together and told our tale.
    And now thy hand hath slipt away from mine,
    And the cold marble cramps it; I dream one,
    Dost thou dream too? and are our dreams the same?

    In 1853 he published the collected "Imaginary Conversations of the Greeks and Romans" which he dedicated to Dickens. Dickens in this year published "Bleak House" which contained the amazingly realistic characterisation of Landor as Boythorn. He also published "The Last Fruit off an Old Tree", containing fresh conversations, critical and controversial essays, miscellaneous epigrams, lyrics and occasional poems of various kind and merit, closing with Five Scenes on the martyrdom of Beatrice Cenci. Swinburne described these as "unsurpassed even by their author himself for noble and heroic pathos, for subtle and genial, tragic and profound, ardent and compassionate insight into character, with consummate mastery of dramatic and spiritual truth."[16] At this time Landor was interesting himself in foreign affairs, in particular Czarist oppression as he saw it and Louis Napoleon. At the end of 1854 his beloved sister Elizabeth died and he wrote a touching memorial.

    "Sharp crocus wakes the froward year;
    In their old haunts birds reappear;
    From yonder elm, yet black with rain,
    The cushat looks deep down for grain
    Thrown on the gravel-walk; here comes
    The redbreast to the sill for crumbs.
    Fly off! fly off! I can not wait
    To welcome ye, as she of late.
    The earliest of my friends is gone.
    Alas! almost my only one!
    The few as dear, long wafted o'er,
    Await me on a sunnier shore."

    In 1856 at the age of 81 he published Antony and Octavius: Scenes for the Study, twelve consecutive poems in dialogue, and "Letter to Emerson", as well as continuing Imaginary Conversations.
    Final Tragedies and return to Italy
    His tomb in English Cemetery at Florence

    In the beginning of 1857, Landor's mind was becoming weakened and he found himself in some unpleasant situations. He became involved in a court case because he had published statements when the case was sub judice and was insulted by counsel as a poor old man brought in to talk twaddle. He then became embroiled in a miserable quarrel between two ladies he knew. He gave one of them, Geraldine Hooper £100, a legacy received from his friend Kenyon. Unknown to Landor she transferred half of it to the other lady a Mrs Yescombe. They then quarreled and the Mrs Yescombe accused Hooper of having obtained the money from Landor for dishonourable reasons. Landor in his fury wrote a pamphlet "Walter Savage Landor and the Honourable Mrs Yescombe" which was considered libellous. Forster persuaded Landor to apologise. Then in 1858 he produced a miscellaneous collection called "Dry Sticks Fagoted by W. S. Landor", which contained among other things some epigrammatic and satirical attacks which led to further libel actions.[4]

    In July that year Landor returned to Italy for the last six years of his life. He was advised to make over his property to his family, on whom he now depended. He hoped to resume his life with his wife and children but found them living disreputably at the Villa Gherardesca and ill-disposed to welcome him. He spent a miserable ten months at his villa, and fled repeatedly to Florence, only to be brought back again. On the last occasion, he took refuge at a hotel in Florence, with next to nothing in his pocket, and was found by Robert Browning then living at the Casa Guidi. Browning managed to obtain an allowance for him from the family and settled him first at Siena and then at Florence.[4]

    Landor busied himself with new editions of his works and interested himself in the unification of Italy. He wrote frequently to Eliza Lynn Linton and added to Imaginary Conversations devising any sale proceeds to the relief of Garibaldi's soldiers. Anthony Trollope visited Florence and brought with him an American girl Kate Field who became Landor's protege. He was still charming, venerable, and courteous, and full of literary interests. He taught Kate Field Latin, repeated poetry and composed some last conversations. In 1861, Browning left Italy after the death of his wife. Landor afterwards seldom left the house and remained petulant and uncomfortable, occasionally visited by his sons. He was much concerned about the fate of his picture collection, little of which had any merit, and about preparations for his grave as he hoped to be buried at Widcombe near Bath. He published some Imaginary Conversations in the 'Atheneum' in 1861-2 and in 1863 published a last volume of "Heroic Idyls, with Additional Poems, English and Latin", described by Swinburne as " the last fruit of a genius which after a life of eighty-eight years had lost nothing of its majestic and pathetic power, its exquisite and exalted". Forster's refusal to publish more about the libel case had interrupted their friendship, but they renewed their correspondence before his death. Almost the last event of his life was a visit in 1864 from the poet Swinburne, who visited Florence specifically to see him, and dedicated to him the 'Atlanta in Calydon'.[4] In 1864 on May Day Landor said to his landlady "I shall never write again. Put out the lights and draw the curtains". A few months later he died quietly in Florence at the age of 89. He was buried not after all at Widcombe but in the English Cemetery, Florence, near the tomb of his friend, Elizabeth Barrett Browning. A statue of his wife can also be found in the 'English' Cemetery, above the tomb of their son, Arnold Savage Landor. Later, his Villa Gherardesca in Fiesole would become the home of the American Icelandic scholar Daniel Willard Fiske, who renamed it the 'Villa Landor'. Landor's grandson was the writer explorer and adventurer Arnold Henry Savage Landor.

    Landor was the close friend of Southey, and Coleridge. His relationship with Wordsworth changed over time from great praise to a certain resentment. Lord Byron tended to ridicule and revile him, and though Landor had little good to say in return during Byron's life he lamented and extolled him as a dead hero. He lavished sympathetic praise on the noble dramatic works of his brother Robert Eyres Landor.
    Review of Landor's work by Swinburne
    Algernon Charles Swinburne, sketch by Dante Gabriel Rossetti

    Swinburne wrote in the ninth edition of the Encyclopædia Britannica and later published in his Miscellanies of 1886 an appreciation which included the following passage[17] (here broken into paragraphs for easier reading):

    "From nineteen almost to ninety his intellectual and literary activity was indefatigably incessant; but, herein at least like Charles Lamb, whose cordial admiration he so cordially returned, he could not write a note of three lines which did not bear the mark of his Roman hand in its matchless and inimitable command of a style at once the most powerful and the purest of his age.

    "The one charge which can ever seriously be brought and maintained against it is that of such occasional obscurity or difficulty as may arise from excessive strictness in condensation of phrase and expurgation of matter not always superfluous, and sometimes almost indispensable. His English prose and his Latin verse are perhaps more frequently and more gravely liable to this charge than either his English verse or his Latin prose. At times it is well-nigh impossible for an eye less keen and swift, a scholarship less exquisite and ready than his own, to catch the precise direction and follow the perfect course of his rapid thought and radiant utterance.

    "This apparently studious pursuit and preference of the most terse and elliptic expression which could be found for anything he might have to say could not but occasionally make even so sovereign a master of two great languages appear dark with excess of light; but from no former master of either tongue in prose or verse was ever the quality of real obscurity, of loose and nebulous incertitude, more utterly alien or more naturally remote. There is nothing of cloud or fog about the path on which he leads us; but we feel now and then the want of a bridge or a handrail; we have to leap from point to point of narrative or argument without the usual help of a connecting plank. Even in his dramatic works, where least of all it should have been found, this lack of visible connection or sequence in details of thought or action is too often a source of sensible perplexity. In his noble trilogy on the history of Giovanna queen of Naples it is sometimes actually difficult to realize on a first reading what has happened or is happening, or how, or why, or by what agency a defect alone sufficient, but unhappily sufficient in itself, to explain the too general ignorance of a work so rich in subtle and noble treatment of character, so sure and strong in its grasp and rendering of high actions and high passions, so rich in humour and in pathos, so royally serene in its commanding power upon the tragic mainsprings of terror and of pity.

    "As a poet, he may be said on the whole to stand midway between Byron and Shelley—about as far above the former as below the latter. If we except Catullus and Simonides, it might be hard to match and it would be impossible to overmatch the flawless and blameless yet living and breathing beauty of his most perfect elegies, epigrams or epitaphs. As truly as prettily was he likened by Leigh Hunt to a stormy mountain pine which should produce lilies. He was a classic, and no formalist; the wide range of his admiration had room for a genius so far from classical as Blake's. Nor in his own highest mood or method of creative as of critical work was he a classic only, in any narrow or exclusive sense of the term. On either side, immediately or hardly below his mighty masterpiece of Pericles and Aspasia, stand the two scarcely less beautiful and vivid studies of medieval Italy and Shakespeare in England."
    In popular culture

    Landor's "I Strove with None" is widely mentioned and discussed. Somerset Maugham used it in "The Razor's Edge", as does Tom Wolfe in "A man in full" location 8,893 (Kindle). In Josephine Pullein-Thompson's Pony Club Team, the second novel in her West Barsetshire series of pony books, it is quoted by both Noel Kettering and Henry Thornton[18] The poem forms the chorus of the Zatopeks' song "Death and the Hobo" from their album, Damn Fool Music.

    In an episode of Cheers "The Spy Who Came in For a Cold One," Ellis Rabb's guest character plagiarizes Landor's "She I Love (Alas in Vain!)" when reciting poetry to Diane. He also plagiarizes Christina Rossetti's "A Birthday."
    See also

    iconPoetry portal

    List of Landor's Imaginary Conversations

    Further reading

    Titus Bicknell, Calamus Ense Potentior Est: Walter Savage Landor's Poetic War of Words, Romanticism On the Net 4 (November 1996) [1]
    E.K. Chambers (ed.), Landor: Poetry and Prose (1946)
    Sidney Colvin, Landor (1881, English Men of Letters series)
    Sidney Colvin, Selections from the Writings of Walter Savage Landor (1882, Golden Treasury series)
    C. G. Crump (1891–1893), comprises Imaginary Conversations, Poems, Dialogues in Verse and Epigrams and The Longer Prose Works.*Charles Dickens, Bleak House (1852–53)
    Malcolm Elwin, Landor: A Replevin (1958; reissued 1970)
    Malcolm Elwin, "Introduction" to: Herbert van Thal (ed.), Landor: a biographical anthology (1973)
    John Forster The Works and Life of Walter Savage Landor (8 vols., 1846)
    Robert Pinsky, Landor's Poetry (1968)
    Charles L. Proudfit (ed.), Landor as Critic (1979)
    G. Rostrevor Hamilton, Walter Savage Landor (1960).
    Iain Sinclair, Landor's Tower (2001)
    R.H. Super, Walter Savage Landor (1954; reprinted 1977)
    Herbert van Thal (ed.) Landor: a biographical anthology (1973, Allen & Unwin)
    Stephen Wheeler (ed.) Letters and other Unpublished Writings (1897)
    A bibliography of his works, many of which are very rare, is included in: Sir Leslie Stephen (1892). "Landor, Walter Savage". In Lee, Sidney. Dictionary of National Biography. 32. London: Smith, Elder & Co..[4]

    References

    Pinsky, Robert, on Landor, Poets on Poets, Carcanet Press , Manchester, 1997 ISBN 9781857543391.
    Schmidt, Michael, Lives of the Poets , Weidenfeld & Nicolson, London 1998 ISBN 9780297840145
    wording in quote marks is from Swinburne's Encyclopædia Britannica article 1882
    "Landor, Walter Savage". Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co. 1885–1900.
    Encyclopædia Britannica 1882 edition
    Sidney Colvin Landor (1881) in the English Men of Letters series
    John Forster "The Works and Life of Walter Savage Landor" (8 vols., 1846)
    W Gifford Examinations of the Strictures of the Critical Reviewers on the Translations of Juvenal (1803) quoted by Robert Super Landor
    Titus Bicknell, "Calamus Ense Potentior Est: Walter Savage Landor's Poetic War of Words." Romanticism On the Net Number 4
    John Sansom "Note for Brecon Beacons Park Society
    National Portrait Gallery, London
    "Review of Imaginary Conversations of Literary Men and Statesmen by Walter Savage Landor, 2 vols., 1824". The Quarterly Review. 30: 508–519. January 1824.
    Richard Monkton Milnes Monographs: Personal and Social (1873)
    Robert Super Landor
    Malcolm Elwin Landor
    Encyclopædia Britannica 1882
    Hyder, C K. Swinburne as Critic. Routledge & Kegan Paul. 1972

    Pullein-Thompson, Josephine. Pony Club Team. Fidra Books, 2009, p. 109

    This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Landor, Walter Savage". Encyclopædia Britannica. 16 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. pp. 161–162.
    External links
    Wikimedia Commons has media related to Walter Savage Landor.
    Wikiquote has quotations related to: Walter Savage Landor
    Wikisource has original text related to this article:
    Author:Walter Savage Landor

    Works by Walter Savage Landor at Project Gutenberg
    Works by or about Walter Savage Landor at Internet Archive
    Works by Walter Savage Landor at LibriVox (public domain audiobooks)
    Poems by Walter Savage Landor
    Jean Field, 'Walter Savage Landor and Warwick'
    Landor House entry on Building History
    "Petition of the Thugs for Toleration" at Quotidiana.org
    Audio: Robert Pinsky reads "On Seeing a Hair of Lucretia Borgia" by Walter Savage Landor (via poemsoutloud.net)
    Archival material at Leeds University Library

    Authority control

    WorldCat Identities VIAF: 46796707 LCCN: n79093401 ISNI: 0000 0001 1026 1069 GND: 118778625 SUDOC: 029866448 BNF: cb121402527 (data) BIBSYS: 90740537 MusicBrainz: f16b8f29-88ae-4bfe-be9e-b196d579461b NLA: 35289916 NDL: 00620972 NKC: mub2012720296 IATH: w6s75f2j

    Categories:

    1775 births1864 deathsEnglish essayistsAlumni of Trinity College, OxfordPeople from WarwickPeople educated at Rugby SchoolMale essayistsEnglish male poets

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    My father- "Take pride in who you are and where you came from. Life is hard, often fighting is the only option!"
    Ernest Hemingway- “In order to write about life, you must first live it.”
    http://www.lindleypoetry.com/category/a-poem-a-day/

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    patterns
    ------ by amy lowell
    i walk down the garden paths,
    and all the daffodils
    are blowing, and the bright blue squills.
    I walk down the patterned garden paths
    in my stiff, brocaded gown.
    With my powdered hair and jewelled fan,
    i too am a rare
    pattern. As i wander down
    the garden paths.

    My dress is richly figured,
    and the train
    makes a pink and silver stain
    on the gravel, and the thrift
    of the borders.
    Just a plate of current fashion,
    tripping by in high-heeled, ribboned shoes.
    Not a softness anywhere about me,
    only whale-bone and brocade.
    And i sink on a seat in the shade
    of a lime tree. For my passion
    wars against the stiff brocade.
    The daffodils and squills
    flutter in the breeze
    as they please.
    And i weep;
    for the lime tree is in blossom
    and one small flower has dropped upon my bosom.

    And the splashing of waterdrops
    in the marble fountain
    comes down the garden paths.
    The dripping never stops.
    Underneath my stiffened gown
    is the softness of a woman bathing in a marble basin,
    a basin in the midst of hedges grown
    so thick, she cannot see her lover hiding,
    but she guesses he is near,
    and the sliding of the water
    seems the stroking of a dear
    hand upon her.
    What is summer in a fine brocaded gown!
    I should like to see it lying in a heap upon the ground.
    All the pink and silver crumpled up on the ground.

    I would be the pink and silver as i ran along the paths,
    and he would stumble after,
    bewildered by my laughter.
    I should see the sun flashing from his sword-hilt and the buckles on his shoes.
    I would choose
    to lead him in a maze along the patterned paths,
    a bright and laughing maze for my heavy-booted lover,
    till he caught me in the shade,
    and the buttons of his waistcoat bruised my body as he clasped me,
    aching, melting, unafraid.
    With the shadows of the leaves and the sundrops,
    and the plopping of the waterdrops,
    all about us in the open afternoon
    i am very like to swoon
    with the weight of this brocade,
    for the sun sifts through the shade.

    Underneath the fallen blossom
    in my bosom,
    is a letter i have hid.
    It was brought to me this morning by a rider from the duke.
    “madam, we regret to inform you that lord hartwell
    died in action thursday sen’night.”
    as i read it in the white, morning sunlight,
    the letters squirmed like snakes.
    “any answer, madam,” said my footman.
    “no,” l told him.
    “see that the messenger takes some refreshment.
    No, no answer.”
    and i walked into the garden,
    up and down the patterned paths,
    in my stiff, correct brocade.
    The blue and yellow flowers stood up proudly in the sun,
    each one.
    I stood upright too,
    held rigid to the pattern
    by the stiffness of my gown.
    Up and down i walked,
    up and down.

    In a month he would have been my husband.
    In a month, here, underneath this lime,
    we would have broke the pattern;
    he for me, and i for him,
    he as colonel, i as lady,
    on this shady seat.
    He had a whim
    that sunlight carried blessing.
    And i answered, “it shall be as you have said.”
    now he is dead.

    In summer and in winter i shall walk
    up and down
    the patterned garden paths
    in my stiff, brocaded gown.
    The squills and daffodils
    will give place to pillared roses, and to asters, and to snow.
    I shall go
    up and down,
    in my gown.
    Gorgeously arrayed,
    boned and stayed.
    And the softness of my body will be guarded from embrace
    by each button, hook, and lace.
    For the man who should loose me is dead,
    fighting with the duke in flanders,
    in a pattern called a war.
    Christ! What are patterns for?

    Amy lowell, “patterns” from the complete poetical works of amy lowell. Copyright © 1955 by houghton mifflin company. Copyright © renewed 1983 by houghton mifflin company, brinton p. Roberts, and g. D'andelot, esquire. Reprinted with the permission of houghton mifflin company. All rights reserved.
    Source: Selected poems of amy lowell (houghton mifflin harcourt, 2002)


    this study guide consists of approximately 17 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of patterns.

    patterns summary & study guide description

    patterns summary & study guide includes comprehensive information and analysis to help you understand the book. This study guide contains the following sections:

    Introduction
    author biography
    plot summary

    themes
    historical context
    critical overview

    this detailed literature summary also contains bibliography on patterns by amy lowell.

    Amy lowell's poem "patterns" was first published in a monthly magazine called the little review in august 1915. The little review had a small circulation, but it attracted the attention of many notable writers of the time. By the time "patterns" was published, lowell herself had already become known as a poetic innovator with her second book, sword blades and poppy seeds (1914). She included "patterns" in her third book, men, women, and ghosts, an immediate bestseller published in october 1916. In spite of her popularity during her lifetime, most of lowell's work was not republished after her death. However, a posthumous collection published in 1926—one year after her death—entitled what's o'clock received the pulitzer prize. "patterns" is one of her best-known poems, probably because it appeared in anthologies throughout the twentieth century. It is included in the most recent volume of lowell's selected poems.

    "patterns" tells the deceptively simple story of a woman walking through a formal garden just after she has learned that her fiancé has been killed in combat. Lowell describes the woman's formal dress and the formal paths of the garden in vivid detail and in short, occasionally rhyming, lines. However, the formal patterns that encircle this woman's life take on new significance in the light of her lover's death. This poem exemplifies lowell's adherence to the principles of imagism—expression through the use of vivid images—even though it does not conform to the original ideas of this early twentieth-century literary movement. In 1913 and 1914, lowell traveled in england and met american expatriate poets ezra pound and hilda doolittle (known as h. D.). Pound and his fellow imagists wrote poetry composed of short, deliberately musical lines. They tried to describe visual images with firm, clear precise language rather than treating them as symbols for abstract ideas or feelings. These ideas influenced lowell throughout her life and particularly in her second and third books of poetry. Lowell says in the preface to men, women, and ghosts that she is trying to use "the movement of poetry in somewhat the same way that the musician uses the movement of music." she also used poetry to comment on current events, particularly world war i, which was underway by the time she published "patterns."

    in "patterns," lowell presents a woman's perspective on war and on social conventions that keep her parading in her "stiff, brocaded gown" while her lover is on the battlefield. The woman in lowell's poem has been robbed of her future marriage by the death of her lover, but she speaks most frankly about missing her lover's embraces. Lowell departed from poetic tradition by writing openly as a woman about the physical experience of being in love. By the end of the poem, the woman's frustrated passion has turned into equal frustration with this "pattern called a war." the idea of a pattern is to make something unified and structured, with expected and predictable outcomes. Both she and her fiancé are subject to patterns, though they do not know it until it is too late. Both of their patterns lead to death: His to a physical death, and hers to an emotional one.

    Read more from the study guide
    i have always thought this to be a great poem and a fine display of this great poet's talent!-tyr
    My father- "Take pride in who you are and where you came from. Life is hard, often fighting is the only option!"
    Ernest Hemingway- “In order to write about life, you must first live it.”
    http://www.lindleypoetry.com/category/a-poem-a-day/

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