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1 year ago

Poems by Isaac Rosenberg

; POEMS BY ISAAC

; POEMS BY ISAAC ROSENBERG poem, because I liked it myself above anything I have yet done. I know my letters are not what they should be ; but I must take any chance I get of writing for fear another chance does not come, so I write hastily and leave out most I should write about. I wished to say last time a lot about your poem, but I could think of nothing that would properly express my great pleasure in it and I can think of nothing now. If anything, I think it is too brief—although it is so rare and compressed and full of hinted matter. I wish I could get back and read your plays ; and if my luck still continues, I shall. Leaves have commenced with us, but it may be a good while before I get mine. We are more busy now than when I last wrote, but I generally manage to knock something up if my brain means to, and I am sketching out a little play. My great fear is that I may lose what Eve written, which can happen here so easily. I send home any bit I write, for safety, but that can easily get lost in transmission. However, I live in an immense trust that things will turn out well." To Gordon Bottomhy (1917). "The other poems I have not yet read, but I will 44

INTRODUCTORY MEMOIR follow on with letters and shall send the bits of —or rather the bit of—a play I've written. Just now it is interfered with by a punishment I am undergoing for the offence of being endowed with a poor memory, which continually causes me trouble and often punishment. I forgot to wear my gas-helmet one day ; in fact, Fve often forgotten it, but I was noticed one day, and seven days 1 pack drill is the consequence, which I do between the hours of going up the line and sleep. My memory, always weak, has become worse since Fve been out here." To Gordon Bottomlcy {Postmark, August 3, 1917). " I don't think I'll get my play complete for it in time, though it will hardly take much space, it's so slight. If I could get home on leave I'd work at it and get it done, no doubt, but leaves are so chancy. It's called 'The Unicorn.' Now, it's about a decaying race who have never seen a woman ; animals take the place of women, but they yearn for continuity. The chiefs Unicorn breaks away and he goes in chase. The Unicorn is found by boys outside a city and brought in, and breaks away again. Saul, who has seen the Unicorn on his way to the city for the week's victuals, 45