[ Vivian Locke Ellis, Georgian poet. ] Unpublished typescript of anthology titled 'The Desert Minstrel and Other Poems', and containing pieces dedicated to Edward Thomas, Walter de la Mare and Arnold Vincent Bowen.

Vivian Locke Ellis (1878-1950), Georgian poet [ Edward Thomas; Walter de la Mare; Arnold Vincent Bowen; Richard Percival Lister; The Saturdays, London literary society ]
Publication details: 
Typed label on inside cover: 'Vivian Locke Ellis, | The Grange, | Selsfield, | By East Grinstead, | Sussex. England' Undated [circa 1947]
SKU: 16631

[4] + 74pp., 4to. On 78 pieces of paper, bound with metal clasp in blue card folder, with white paper label with title on front cover ('THE DESERT MINSTREL | AND | OTHER POEMS | BY | VINCENT LOCKE ELLIS') and second label with address on inside front cover. In good condition, lightly-aged, in aged and worn folder. In worn manila envelope, with note by R. P. Lister (see below) reading: 'Typescript of collection of poems (unpublished) by Vivian Locke Ellis'. Three-page 'Index' gives the titles of the 69 poems, beginning with 'To W. de la M. [i.e. Walter de la Mare] from V. L. E.' and ending with the longest poem in the book, 'April, 1917 | To Edward Thomas; | Killed in action on Easter Monday'. Other poems include: 'Two Shepherds (To W. de la Mare)', 'Hitler's Threat at Danzig', 'Sexton's Rally', 'Down Perim's Coasts' and 'In Temple Gardens'. Ellis's obituary in The Times, 1 June 1950, describes him as 'the author of a number of poems of high quality in the grand tradition of English lyrical verse'. He was one of the Georgian poets, appearing with Edward Thomas, W. H. Davis, Walter de la Mare and J. C. Squire in the group's 1918 anthology '12 Poets'. Ellis was also the backer behind John Middleton Murry's 'Adelphi' magazine. His career spanned more than forty years, with his first published work, 'An Elegy', appearing in 1904, and 'Collected Lyrical Poems' in 1946. The Times obituary notes that Ellis was 'engaged on completing a further collection at the time of his death', and the present item is clearly that collection, several of its 69 poems having previously published, at least as early as 1910 ('Go, Saintlike Sybil' appeared in 'The Academy' in that year), and with one poem, 'To A. V. B.' [i.e. Arnold Vincent Bowen (1901-1947)], dated 'December 1947'. This item comes from the papers of fellow-poet Richard Percival Lister (1914-2014), who with Ellis was an active member of the London literary society 'The Saturdays', founded in 1944. The poem 'To A. V. B.' is an elegy for Bowen (another of 'The Saturdays'), and apparently unpublished. It exemplifies Ellis's qualities: 'Brave spirit, loving life too well | to gird at death, | This halt you make is but to | take a deeper breath. | We who are left are only one | the less. | Only! Were only less the wilderness. | I who have journeyed further | but to stand | And watch you pass me - | Brother, lend me your hand.' Note: Kenneth Hopkins, in his autobiography, describes Ellis as a "complete poet" ("The Corruption of a Poet", p.202).