" lost all my earthly faculties, and I fought like an angel . . . I captured a German Machine Gun and scores of prisoners . . . I only shot one man with my revolver . . . My nerves are in perfect order." - Letter to his mother, October of 1918
On the Trail of the Poets of the Great War: Robert Graves & Siegfried Sassoon
(Helen McPhail, Philip Guest)
Siegfried Sassoon and Robert Graves were two of the most famous British authors of the 20th century, but they are remembered by many World War I buffs primarily as officers in the Royal Welch Fusiliers. Both men were critical of the war but had distinguished combat records. Sassoon was committed to a shell-shock hospital after a particularly critical anti-war article, as recounted in the book and film Regeneration. Both men lived on for over 50 years after the war; Graves gaining particular fame for the Claudius public television series. In their prose and poetry on the war both authors at times changed the names of participants, and both men added and deleted material from later editions of their work. This unique guide traces the wartime service of the authors, identifies actual people and places in their works, and gives biographical detail on their long post-war lives and careers. Includes full bibliography.
Reissued to mark the centenary of Wilfred Owen's birth, this biography is more than a simple account of his life--the childhood spent in the back streets of Birkenhead and Shrewsbury, the appalling months in the trenches--it is an enquiry into the workings of a poet's mind. Reproducing some of Owen's drawings and facsimile manuscripts of many of his greatest poems, this portrait is indispensable to any student of Wilfred Owen and the poetry of the First World War.
Wilfred Owen: Selected Letters
(Wilfred Owen, John Bell (Editor))
This selection from the full 1967 edition of Owen's letters includes some early examples, but concentrates on the last seven years of his short life. His letters--almost all to his mother--constitute his self-portrait.