Ernest Dowson Poems

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Ernest Dowson
Ernest Christopher Dowson (2 August 1867 23 February 1900) born in Lee, London, was an English poet associated with the Decadent movement. Dowson attended The Queen's College, Oxford, but left before obtaining a degree. In November 1888, he started work with his father at Dowson and Son, a dry-docking business in Limehouse, east London, established by the poet's grandfather. He led as active a social life as he could, carousing with medical students and law pupils, going to music halls, taking the performers to dinner, and so forth. At the same time he was working assiduously at his writing. He was a member of the Rhymers' Club, which included W. B. Yeats and Lionel Johnson. He was also a frequent contributor to the literary magazines The Yellow Book and The Savoy. Dowson collaborated on a couple of unsuccessful novels with Arthur Moore, was working on his own novel Madame de Viole, and was working as an unpaid reviewer for The Critic. In 1889, Dowson fell in love with eleven-year-old Adelaide "Missie" Foltinowicz, the daughter of a Polish restaurant owner. Adelaide is reputed to be the subject of one his best-known poems, Non Sum Qualis eram Bonae Sub Regno Cynarae. He pursued her unsuccessfully; in 1897, she married a tailor who lodged above the restaurant, and Dowson was crushed. In August 1894, his father, who was in the advanced stages of tuberculosis, died of an overdose of chloral hydrate. His mother, who was also consumptive, hanged herself in February 1895, and Dowson began to decline rapidly. Robert Sherard one day found Dowson almost penniless in a wine bar and took him back to the cottage in Catford where he was himself living. Dowson spent the last six weeks of his life at Sherard's cottage and died there of alcoholism (or some say of tuberculosis) at the age of 32.

ode to the virginian voyage
You brave heroic minds,
Worthy your country's name,
That honour still pursue,
Go and ... [read poem]
idea: to the reader of these sonnets
Into these loves, who but for passion looks,
At this first sight here let him lay them by
... [read poem]
noah's flood
Eternal and all-working God, which wast
Before the world, whose frame by Thee was cast,
An... [read poem]
"Non Sum Qualis Eram Bonae Sub Regno Cynarae"

Last night, ah, yesternight, betwixt her li... [read poem]
a last word
Let us go hence: the night is now at hand;
The day is overworn, the birds all flown;
... [read poem]
idea liii: to the river ancor
Clear Ancor, on whose silver-sanded shore
My soul-shrin'd saint, my fair Idea lies,
O bles... [read poem]
idea li
Calling to mind since first my love begun,
Th' incertain times oft varying in their course,... [read poem]
idea lxi
Since there's no help, come let us kiss and part.
Nay, I have done, you get no more of me;... [read poem]
idea xx
An evil spirit, your beauty, haunts me still,
Wherewith, alas, I have been long possess'd,... [read poem]
nymphidia, the court of fairy

But let us leave Queen Mab a while,
Through many a gate, o'er many a stile,... [read poem]
ode to the cambro-britons and their harp, his ballad of agincourt
Fair stood the wind for France,
When we our sails advance;
Nor now to prove our chance... [read poem]
idea xxxi
Methinks I see some crooked mimic jeer
And tax my muse with this fantastic grace,
Turning ... [read poem]
idea xxxvii
Dear, why should you command me to my rest
When now the night doth summon all to sleep?
Me... [read poem]
idea vi
How many paltry, foolish, painted things,
That now in coaches trouble every street,
Shall ... [read poem]
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