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Edward Thomas - centenary year of death
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Edited Feb 25, 2017, 19:54
Edward Thomas - centenary year of death
Feb 24, 2017, 13:09
After watching the programme about the South Downs recently, I thought about Edward Thomas. Taking his book The South Country down from the shelf I remembered it is almost 100 years since his death. Born 3rd March 1878, he died on at dawn on 9th April 1917 on the first day of the Battle of Arras. A man who loved ancient footpaths and who wrote about them eloquently in language that knows no borders. Here's one of his poems.

The Combe by Edward Thomas
The Combe was ever dark, ancient and dark.
Its mouth is stopped with bramble, thorn, and briar;
And no one scrambles over the sliding chalk
By beech and yew and perishing juniper
Down the half precipices of its sides, with roots
And rabbit holes for steps. The sun of Winter,
The moon of Summer, and all the singing birds
Except the missel-thrush that loves juniper,
Are quite shut out. But far more ancient and dark
The Combe looks since they killed the badger there,
Dug him out and gave him to the hounds,
That most ancient Briton of English beasts.

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