Alice Meynell Poems

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Alice Meynell
Alice Christiana Gertrude Thompson Meynell (22 September 1847 - 27 November 1922) was an English writer, editor, critic, and suffragist, now remembered mainly as a poet. Born in Barnes, London, to Thomas James and Christiana (nee Weller) Thompson. The family moved from England, Switzerland, and France, but she was brought up mostly in Italy. Her father was a friend of Charles Dickens. Preludes (1875) was her first poetry collection, illustrated by her elder sister Elizabeth (the artist Lady Elizabeth Butler, 1850-1933, whose husband was Sir William Francis Butler). The work was warmly praised by Ruskin, although it received little public notice. Ruskin especially singled out the sonnet Renunciation for its beauty and delicacy. After Alice, following inline with the entire Thompson family, converted to the Roman Catholic Church (1868 to 1880), her writings migrated to subjects of religious matters. This eventually led her to the Catholic newspaper publisher and editor Wilfrid Meynell (1852 - 1948) in 1876. A year later (1877) she married Meynell, and they settled in Kensington. They became proprietor and editor of The Pen, the Weekly Register, Merry England, and other magazines. Alice and Wilfrid had a family of eight children, Sebastian, Monica, Everard, Madeleine, Viola, Vivian (who died at three months), Olivia, and Francis. Viola Meynell (1885-1956) became an author in her own right, and the youngest child Francis Meynell (1891-1975) was the poet and printer at the Nonesuch Press. Alice was much involved in editorial work on publications with her husband, and in her own writing, poetry and prose. She wrote regularly for The World, The Spectator, The Magazine of Art, The Scots Observer, The Tablet, The Art Journal, the National Observer, edited by W. E. Henley the Pall Mall Gazette, and The Saturday Review. The British poet Francis Thompson, down and out in London and trying to recover from the opium addiction that had overtaken him, sent the couple a manuscript. His poems were first published in Wilfred's Merrie England, and the Meynells became a supporter of Thompson. His 1893 book Poems was a Meynell production and initiative. At the end of the nineteenth century, in conjunction with uprisings against the British (among them the Indianís, the Zuluís, the Boxer Rebellion, and the Muslim revolt lead by Muhammad Ahmed in the Sudan), many European scholars, writers, and artists, especially Catholics, began to question Europeís colonial imperialism, and its attempt to rule the world. This led Alice, Wilfrid, Elizabeth, and others in their circle to speak out for the oppressed. Alice became a leading figure in the Women Writers' Suffrage League, which was founded by Cicely Hamilton and active 1908 to 1919. Her prose essays were remarkable for fineness of culture and peculiar restraint of style. After a series of illnesses, she died 27 November 1922. She is buried at Kensal Green Catholic Cemetery, London, England.

pg wooster, just as he useter
 
 
Bound to your bookseller, leap to your library,
Deluge your dealer with bakshish and bribary,... [read poem]
the wombat
 
 
The wombat lives across the seas,
Among the far Antipodes.
He may exist on nuts and berrie... [read poem]
common cold
 
 
Go hang yourself, you old M.D,!
You shall not sneer at me.
Pick up your hat and stethoscop... [read poem]
reflections on ice-breaking
 
 
Candy
Is Dandy
But liquor
Is quicker.

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maternity
 
 
ONE wept whose only child was dead,
New-born, ten years ago.
"Weep not; he is in bliss,... [read poem]
very like a whale
 
 
One thing that literature would be greatly the better for
Would be a more restricted employment... [read poem]
the tale of custard the dragon
 
 
Belinda lived in a little white house,
With a little black kitten and a little gray mouse,... [read poem]
the hippopotamus
 
 
Behold the hippopotamus!
We laugh at how he looks to us,
And yet in moments dank and grim,... [read poem]
polterguest, my polterguest
 
 
I've put Miss Hopper upon the train,
And I hope to do so never again,
For must I do so, I ... [read poem]
will consider situation
 
 
There here are words of radical advice for a young man looking for a job;
Young man, be a snob... [read poem]
the purist
 
 
I give you now Professor Twist,
A conscientious scientist,
Trustees exclaimed, "He never b... [read poem]
the sniffle
 
 
In spite of her sniffle
Isabel's chiffle.
Some girls with a sniffle
Would be weepy an... [read poem]
kipling's vermont
 
 
The summer like a rajah dies,
And every widowed tree
Kindles for Congregationalist eyes
An alien suttee.

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there's nae luck about the house
 
 
And are ye sure the news is true?
And are ye sure he's weel?
Is this a time to think o... [read poem]
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