Unsigned reviews of poetry by Ford Madox Hueffer, Susan Miles, Lancelot Hogben, and Pamela Glenconner
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716 ] Unsigned reviews of poetry by Ford Madox Hueffer, Susan Miles, Lancelot Hogben, and Pamela Glenconner1 The Egoist, 5 (May 1918) 75 On Heaven and Poems Written on Active Service, by Ford Madox Hueffer. London: John Lane, 1918. Pp. 128. The fact that “On Heaven” is obtainable in a book should not escape mention ; we can now throw away the number of Poetry for July 1914.2 The rest of the book will not much “add to the author’s reputation.” Dunch, by Susan Miles. Oxford: B. H. Blackwell, 1918. Pp. 72.3 Dunch really deserves the quite favourable reviews which it has had from the majority of the side-whiskered weeklies. Miss (or Mrs.) Miles is a genre writer, i.e. the subject has contributed as much as the writer, and she knows her subject well. Her subject is Cranford size and shape, but the world has changed.4 Her presentation of the village is more a reaction than pure observation , but a vigorous and entertaining reaction. There are possibilities of a larger size satire than Minnie Rolls and the curates and imbeciles in such lines as these which I have not seen quoted by the reviewers: I want to shout the psalms very loud indeed . . . I want to tell the brethren What Jesus has done for me. And I want to tell it out among the heathen. I want to be a minister in the Church of Christ Jesus. I want to baptise His babies, And teach His little ones. . . .5 Exiles of the Snow, and Other Poems, by Lancelot Hogben. London: A. C. Fifield, 1918. Pp. 62.6 The dedication “to my comrades of the Stepney Herald League” does not arouse confidence; the form is reminiscent and the content mostly [ 717 Unsigned reviews of poetry meditative; but there is a simple sincerity which strikes out a good line here and there (“When I am old and quite worn out”)7 and which would stand the author in good stead if he would read the right things and work hard. The Sayings of the Children. Written down by their mother, Pamela Glenconner. Oxford: B. H. Blackwell, 1918. Pp. 138.8 The Times says: “With little graphic touches and light suggestions of the children’s unconscious humour she gives these sayings something of their first freshness, and here and there opens a dizzy glimpse into the shining fairy world of the childish mind.”9 To this account, there is nothing to add, except, why did the Times devote only one column to this book? Per Amica Silentia Lunae, by W. B. Yeats. London: Macmillan, 1918. Notice later.10 Notes 1. “Unsigned, but the review of Dunch is by T. S. Eliot, and the others are almost certainly by him” (Gallup 202). 2. Hueffer says in the preface that when “On Heaven” appeared in Poetry in June (not July) 1914, he thought it “too sloppy” and was determined to suppress it but has now decided to “resuscitate the poem” in deference to “the wishes of certain readers of Poetry, and . . . the conviction–or it might be more modest to say, the hope!–that it will bring comfort to the hearts of some of my comrades and some of the womenfolk of my comrades” (6-7). 3. Susan Miles (pseudonym of Ursula Roberts, 1888-1975), poet, novelist, suffragette. Dunch, her first volume, appeared under the sign of Blackwell’s “Adventurers All: A Series of Young Poets Unknown to Fame.” 4. Elizabeth Gaskell’s novel Cranford (1853) includes counterparts of Miles’s portrayal of middle-class characters such as “Minnie Rolls, C. C. H. F.” in the village of Dunch. 5. From “Ecce Deus Fortior Me” (58). 6.ExilesofSnowwastheonlyvolumeofversepublishedbysocialbiologistandmathematician Lancelot Hogben (1895-1975), a 1916 Cambridge graduate who had been imprisoned for several months as a conscientious objector. At the time of this review, he was associated with the leftwing , antiwar Stepney Herald League and lecturing to workers at the Marxist Plebs’ League. 7. Opening line of “At the Last” (49). 8. Pamela Wyndham, Lady Glenconner (1871-1928), was a writer of children’s books. 9. The volume was reviewed by Frederick Thomas Dalton, assistant editor of TLS, under the title “The Mind of a Child” in the TLS, 845 (28 Mar 1918), 150. 10. TSE’s review ofYeats’sbookwaspostponeduntiltheJune/JulyissueoftheEgoist(724–25). ...