Quote by Ernest Dowson: “They are not long, the days of wine and roses.”
Ernest Dowson – the ‘days of wine and roses’ man
Poetry gives me a headache. College ruined poetry for me. It was never enough to simply read poetry. And I always got it wrong. Dowson was a raging alcoholic a complete slave to the Green Fairy who, by all accounts, drank himself to death at age But his official cause of death is listed as tuberculosis.
We should not be surprised that he titled his poem in Latin; this was in the days, after all, when a knowledge of Latin was considered indispensable to a good education. So that is why students of English poetry find themselves faced with these Latin words at the head of the poem:. O happy Sestius, The short span of life forbids us undertaking long hopes. Yesterday I discussed Wenlock Edge , by A. Housman, in which he tells us that the emotional gale of human life soon wears itself out from its own force and disappears. Dowson is similarly speaking of the brevity of human emotions.
Tuesday 28 October , We heard two extracts on air. Dowson was a writer associated with the Decadent movement , and a member of the Rhymers Club. As well as poems, he wrote novels and short stories, and translated French fiction, including Les Liaisons Dangereuses. Notoriously, he fell in love with a 12 year old girl, Adelaide Foltinowicz, and proposed to her when she was Her rejection of his advances both inspired his poetry and contributed to his decline.
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The English writer Ernest Dowson was born on 2 August , years ago. Yeats put it , the rest of them not really worth reading — unless, that is, you like to plug through 72 poems of unremitting sadness, loss and regret, many with Latin titles, all displaying a stylish surface of fustian language without any intellectual depth at all. There are some allusions to something or other in them, but those allusions are just the mannerisms of a posing latinist with really nothing interesting to say. His prose is even worse, having no redeeming features whatsoever: on your deathbed your weeping loved ones will hear you gurgle, 'Please can I have the hours back that I spent reading Ernest Dowson's works'. A photograph of Ernest Dowson, ND. Image: from The poems of Ernest Dowson , Nevertheless, he hit the jackpot on the poetic fruit machine three times— and the jackpots were big, if only posthumous ones.
Perhaps one has to have a certain age to fully understand the meaning of it. It is absolutely beautiful, one of my favourites. It is a goodbye to youth, bitter sweet. I agree, Tiania! I don't necessarily find it depressing - poignant however.