ENGLISH POETS
A ~ C




Captain Gordon ALCHIN . Born in Kent. Died 1947. Commissioned into the Royal Field Artillery, served in Flanders. Transferred to Royal Flying Corps, served in Flanders again. Awarded the Air Force Cross.


Richard ALDINGTON (1892-1962). Educated at Dover College and University of London. With Ezra Pound and his wife "H.D." (Hilda Doolittle) founded Imagism (1912). Editor of the Egoist. Served in France, 8th Battalion, Devonshire Regiment and 8th Battalion, Royal Sussex Regiment. Commissioned Nov 1917 as 2nd Lieutenant in 9th Battalion, Royal Sussex Regiment. Severely gassed and shell-shocked in 1918; demobilized January 1919. Was badly gassed on the Western Front. His war poetry appeared in Images (1919) Images of War (1919), Collected Poems (1929), and Complete Poems (1948). His war experiences also formed the basis for two novels, Death of a Hero (1929), which depicts a young officer killed in 1918, and Roads to Glory (1930), as well as a volume of autobiography, Life for Life's Sake (1941). In addition, Aldington published other volumes of fiction and poetry, literary criticism, and disparaging biographies of D.H. Lawrence and T.E. Lawrence.


H.B.K. ALLPASS. Killed in action, 1916.


Herbert ASQUITH (1881-1947). Served as a captain in the Royal Artillery.

~~~ Joliffe, John, LIFE AND LETTERS (Collins, 1980).


Major H.D.A. "B." 55th Division, BEF in France.


2nd Lt. Harold BECKH. Born January 1, 1894, in Great Amwell, Hertfordshire. Educated Haileybury College & Jesus College, Cambridge. Served as 2dLt with 12th Battalion East Yorkshire Regiment in trenches near Bertrancourt, from March to August, 1916. He was killed by German machine gun fire while on patrol in the Robecq area on the night of August 14.

THE SONG OF SHEFFIELD

Shells, shells, shells!
The song of the city of steel;
Hammner and turn, and file,
Furnace, and lathe, and wheel.
Tireless machinery,
Man's ingenuity,
Making a way for the martial devil's meal.

Shells, shells, shells!
Out of the furnace blaze;
Roll, roll, roll,
Into theworkshop's maze.
Ruthless machinery
Boring eternally,
Boring a hole for the shattering charge that stays.

Shells, shells, shells!
The song of the city of steel;
List to the devel's mirth,
Hark to their laughters' peal:
Sheffield's machinery
Crushing humanity
Neath devil-ridden death's impassive heel.


~~~ SWALLOWS IN STORM AND SUNLIGHT (Chapman & Hall, Ltd, 1917).

Paul BEWSHER (1894-1966). Royal Naval Air Service, 1915-18; Royal Air Force, 1918-19. Shot down once. Awarded Distinguished Service Cross.


Lawrence BINYON (1869-1943). Educated at St Paul's School, and Trinity College, Oxford. Before going to the Front, Binyon was on the staff of the British Museum where he became an authority on Chinese & Japanese art. Published work on Botticelli, Blake & English water-colorists. Best known for his poem "The Fallen," which appeared in 1914. Close friend of Isaac Rosenberg.

~~~ THE WINNOWING FAN: POEMS ON THE GREAT WAR (London: Elkin Mathews).

~~~ THE ANVIL (London: Elkin Mathews, 1916).

~~~ THE FOUR YEARS (London: Elkin Mathews, 1919).

~~~ COLLECTED POEMS (Macmillan, 1931).


Edmund Charles BLUNDEN (1896-1974). Commissioned into the Royal Sussex Regiment. Served in France and Belgium, 1915-19. Fought on the Somme and at Ypres. Awarded the Military Cross. His memoir Undertones of War is one of the great first-hand accounts of the war.

~~~ UNDERTONES OF WAR (Cobden-Sanderson, 1928).

~~~ POEMS 1914-1930 (Cobden-Sanderson, 1930).

~~~ Webb, Barry, EDMUND BLUNDEN: A BIOGRAPHY (Yale, 1990).


Commander John Graham BOWER, (pseu. "Klaxon") (1886-1940). Served in the Royal Navy throughout the war.


Major Francis BRETT-YOUNG (1884-1954). Served with the Royal Army Medical Corps in East Africa. Invalided home in 1918.


Vera BRITTAIN (1893-1970). Born, Newcastle-under-Lyme, England. Educated at Somerville College, Oxford. In 1914 she met the poet Roland Leighton, a friend of her brother, Edward. At the outbreak of war both men enlisted in the British Army, while Vera joined the Voluntary Aid Detachment, serving both in England and France. She & Leighton were engaged in August, 1915 . He was killed four months later on the Western Front; as was her brother. Her first published work was a book of poems: VERSES OF A VAD. (1918). Her first novel, THE DARK TIDE, was published in 1923. Her first volume of autobiography, TESTAMENT OF YOUTH appeared ten years later, describing her experiences as a nurse in the war. It became a best-seller in both England & America. About this time she became a pacificst and was active in the Peace Pledge Union. In 1939 she began publishing a journal, LETTERS TO PEACE LOVERS. During the Second World War Brittain published HUMILIATION WITH HONOUR, an explanation of her pacifism and SEEDS OF CHAOS, a critique of England's policy of saturation bombing. After the war, in addition to other activities, she will become active in the nuclear disarmament movement. Brittain remained an active and prominent pacifist well into the nuclear era.

~~~ CHRONICLE OF YOUTH: VERA BRITTAIN'S WAR DIARY 1913-1917. (Edited by Alan Bishop with Terry Smart. Foreword by Clare Leighton. Gollancz, 1981).

---. TESTAMENT OF YOUTH . London: Victor Gollancz, 1933.

---. HONOURABLE ESTATE . London: Victor Gollancz, 1936.

---. WARTIME CHRONICLE: VERA BRITTAIN'S DIARY, 1939-1945 . Ed. Alan Bishop and Y. Aleksandra Bennett. London: Victor Gollancz Ltd., 1989.

---. TESTAMENT OF EXPERIENCE . London: Victor Gollancz, 1957.

Berry, Paul and Mark Bostridge. VERA BRITTAIN: A LIFE. London: Chatto & Windus, 1995.

Gorham, Deborah. VERA BRITTAIN: A FEMINIST LIFE. London: Blackwell Publishers, 1996.

Foxwell, Elizabeth. "Testament of Youth: Vera Brittain's Quest for Literary and Personal Peace" in, WOMEN'S LIFEWRITING: LIVES CONSIDERED AND RECONSIDERED DAY BY DAY. Ed. Linda Coleman. Popular Press. In press.(1997)






Rupert BROOKE, 1887-1915. Commissioned into Royal Naval Division. Served in defense of Antwerp. Died of blood poisoning en route to Gallipoli.

~~~ COLLECTED POEMS. With memoir by Edward Marsh (Sidgwick and Jackson, 1918).

~~~ POETICAL WORKS.. Edited by Geoffrey Keynes (Faber & Faber, 1946, 1974).

~~~ SELECTED LETTERS . Edited by Geoffrey Keynes (Faber & Faber, 1968).

De la Mare, Walter, RUPERT BROOK AND THE INTELLECTUAL IMAGINATION . (Sedgwick and Jackson, 1919).

Hassall, Christopher, RUPERT BROOK (Faber & Faber, 1964).

Lehmann, John, RUPERT BROOK: HIS LIFE AND HIS LEGEND (Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 1980).

Rogers, Timothy, RUPERT BROOK (Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1971).




Sergeant Francis BRETT-YOUNG


Frank S. BROWN.


John BUCHAN (1875-1940). Commissioned into Intelligence Corps. Served on Haig's staff. Appointed Director of Information, 1917; appointed Director of Intelligence, Ministry of Information, 1918.


Captain T.P. CAMERON-WILSON. Served with Sherwood Foresters. Killed in action on the Somme, March 1918.


Alec de CANDOLE , born January 26, 1897, in Cheltenham, the son of a clergyman. Educated at Marlborough College, which he left in April 1916 to enlist. He was commissioned in the 4th Wiltshire Regiment and be sent to Flanders in April, 1917. He was wounded in October 1917. During his recovery at home he wrote "The Faith of a Sulbaltern: Essays on Religion and Life." On his return to Belgium in July 1918, he joined the 49th Company, Machine Gun Corps at Ypres. At the beginning of September 1918, the Battalion was in Aubigny, west of Arras. On 4 September the Battalion Diary recorded that Alec de Candole was killed in a bombing raid on Bonningues. Two days before his death, he will write his final poem:

When the Last Long Trek is Over

When the last long trek is over,
And the last long trench filled in,
I値l take a boat to Dover,
Away from all the din;
I値l take a trip to Mendip,
I値l see the Wilshire downs,
And all my soul I値l then dip
In peace no trouble drowns.

Away from noise of battle,
Away from bombs and shells,
I値l lie where browse the cattle,
Or pluck the purple bells.
I値l lie among the heather,
And watch the distant plain,
Through all the summer weather,
Nor go to fight again.



May Wedderburn CANNAN (1893-1973). Served in the Voluntary Aid Detachment.


2nd Lieutenant Leonard Niell COOK, M.C. Royal Lancers Regiment. Killed in action, July 7, 1917.

~~~ MORE SONGS BY THE FIGHTING MEN (Erskine Macdonald).


Lieutenant-Commander Noel Marcus Francis CORBETT. Served in the Royal Navy.


Sgt. Fredk. Leslie A COULSON . Born 1889, Hendon, England. Reuter's correspondent & well-known Fleet Street journalist before the war.
Joined 2nd London Regiment (Royal Fusiliers) in September 1914, serving in the ranks. Wounded at Gallipoli, then served in France as a sergeant. Killed on the Somme while attached to 12th London Regiment (Rangers), on October 7, 1916, aged 27. Buried in Grove Town Cemetery, Meaulte. From an Outpost published in 1917, was an immediate success, selling 10,000 copies in less than 12 months.



~~~ FROM AN OUTPOST AND OTHER POEMS (Erskine Macdonald, 1917).




Rifleman S. Donald COX. Served in the London Rifle Brigade.



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