In 1890 W B Yeats and Ernest Rhys founded a poetry club. Based mainly at Fleet Street's immortal 'Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese' pub with occasional appearances at the Domino room in the Café Royal poets gathered together to dine and drink.

Whilst it was based on a core of poets many others attended on an ad hoc basis including Oscar Wilde, Francis Thompson & Lord Alfred Douglas. The camaraderie, banter and poetry that played out in their dreams, ambitions and for many, their difficult lives led Yeats to call them 'the tragic generation'.

As well as their enthusiastic social forays they printed two anthologies of verse. The first in 1892 and the second in 1894. For all the talent it could call upon the print runs were only in their hundreds.

Part of a poet's obligation is to move the boundaries of society, to write what others shun. And whilst that is certainly the case with our group in terms of writing in one glaring respect they were very Victorian. The members of the club were only men.

Arthur Ransome sums up their existence as "... the Rhymer's Club used to meet, to drink from tankards, smoke clay pipes, and recite their own poetry".

Whilst their initial aims were food, drink, camaraderie and bragging, the reality is that their poetry gives us so much more.

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  • We started tracking this book on September 11, 2020.
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  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • Lending: Disabled
  • Print Length: 80 Pages
  • File Size: 178 KB

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