Housmania

If you’ve looked through this site, you may have noticed that I’m quite fond of the poetical works of A.E. Housman, whose remains can be found in St. Laurence’s churchyard in Ludlow, not five minutes walk from where I’m sitting right now.

Which explains why I have a short-ish article in the January-February issue of Ludlow Ledger entitled While Ludlow Tower Shall Stand, about my personal voyage into the Housman’s world. The title of the article comes from A Shropshire Lad III (The Recruit) and while it’s quite suitable for the content of the article, I hadn’t realized at the time I wrote it that Clive Richardson had used a very similar line from the same poem for his book Till Ludlow Tower Shall Fall, or else I’d have used a different title. Sorry, Clive! Still, I don’t suppose my little article is going to affect the sales of your book adversely. 🙂

If this is of any interest to you, hopefully you can find a copy of Ludlow Ledger (it’s free!) from one of the outlets listed here, or order a single copy or subscription from the paper’s web site (but that isn’t free…), or view it online here.

If it isn’t of any interest, I shan’t hold it against you. 🙂

David Harley
Small Blue-Green World

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4 thoughts on “Housmania

    1. David Harley Post author

      Hi, Marie. Thank you. The quote comes from a letter to a Houston Martin, dated 14th April 1934: Page 416 of Letters of A.E. Housman edited by Archie Burnett. The full quote is: “I am Worcestershire by birth: Shropshire was our western horizon, which made me feel romantic about it. I do not know the county well, except in parts, and some of my topographical details are wrong and imaginary. The Wrekin is wooded, and Wenlock Edge along the western side, but Clees and most of the other hills are grass or heather…” and so on. Burnett points out in a footnote that “AEH’s mistake about Hughley steeple and about suicides buried on the N. side of the churchyard are the only ones he made, however.” Best wishes, D.

      Reply
      1. mariekreft

        That’s a brilliant find. Thank you so much, David (sorry I called you Dave earlier – should never assume a ‘Dave’!) – and for replying so quickly.

      2. David Harley Post author

        You’re very welcome. As I’ve grown older the number of people calling me Dave has decreased, even among the many Americans I work with, but I’m not precious about it. 🙂 Good luck with the book. (Got to love the Stokesay gatehouse in the sunshine.) 🙂

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