Parish Notes

Lecture on War Poetry 1919
The Morpeth Herald 17/01/1919 reports:
A very interesting and instructive discourse was delivered by Professor Mawer, of Durham University, on the subject of War-time Poetry, at the Co-operative Hall, Blyth, on Wednesday evening, when the Rev. James Westwater presided over a very fair audience in view of the severe weather of that evening.
The speaker, who was in Khaki, having seen service overseas, spoke of poetsof the past and their poems on war - Byron, Dibden, Campbell, Southey, Tennyson, and other poets, whom he quoted and contrasted with the poetry produced during war. The volume and quality of poetry witten during the present war had, he said, the impress of energy and vividness which came from the fact that the writers were in direct contact with the incidents and scenes described, whereas other poets had largely to draw upon their imagination for their pictures. Hence there was more real, true description of the actual features of war in the work of present day writers. The fighting men of other days consisted largely of uneducated men of what might be called a mercenary army, but into this great conflict had been poured the educated and intelligent men from all kinds of homes.
The speaker quoted from Patrick Magill, Ed. Harvey, Rupert Brook, R.E. Vernay, and many others. The lyrical outflashings and deep sentiment and humour quoted were well chosen and appreciated by the audience."