Ulick OConnor, Oliver St John Gogarty, 1964 Cape.
First meeting of Irish citizen Army held in rooms of R. M. Gwynn (TCD Fellow), under chairmanship of Charles Oldham. 1913.
Gogarty entered TCD, 1898. Swans of St Johns attributed to him.
Mahaffy: An Irish bull, madam, is always pregnant
Sir Boyle Roche, last speaker of Irish HC: Why should we put ourselves out of the way to do anything for posterity, for what has posterity done for us?
The alchemy which makes nation was at work. A new Irishman was coming into existence, neither the Anglo-Irish or Gaelic, but a blend of both races. (OConnor, p.42).
Yeats was at Moores the other Saturday, and drank whiskeys and sodas, and recited a passage from a play he is composing, Deirdre. The effects on his reciting this are not be transmitted to you. He forgot himself and his face seemed tremulous as if in an image of impalpable fire. His lips are dark cherry red and his cheeks too, take colour, and his eyes actually glow black and then the voice sets all vibrating as he sways like a druid with his whole soul chanting. No wonder the mechanics in America are mesmerised. I know no more beautiful face that Yeatss, when lit with song. Moore of course talked Bawdy. The conversation was very interesting to me. At Moores everyone becomes inspired to talk without affectation. More Is the most sincerely affected man I know. His mannerisms have become real Moore. (Gogarty, Letter to GKA Bell, in Many Lines to Thee, pp.45-46).
Gogarty told Philip Toynbee, James Joyce is not a gentleman.
Gogarty spoke at annual convention of Sinn Fein, Nov. 1905, supporting motion that the people of Ireland are a free people, and that no law made without their authority or consent, is or ever can be binding on their conscience.
Churchill described Griffith as that new phenomenon, a silent Irishman
Gogartys play Blight, the first Dublin slum play, influenced OCasey and was the first to reveal the poetic undertones of Dublin proletarian dialogue. (OConnor, 95)
JB Yeats on America
What America needs to rescue it from its unrest and delirious collectivism is poets and solitaries, men who turn aside and live to themselves and enjoy the luxury of their own feelings and thoughts. (Archibald, JB Yeats, Bucknell, p.62).
To criticise is neither to praise or denounce, but to get nearer to your subject. (Archibald, 85-6.)
On Joyce: self discipline of the sternest kind is evident in every sentence he writes. (p.76).
on TW Rolleston, p.91.
Warner quotes Douglas Goulding: One of his [Pounds] greatest triumphs in London was the way in which he stormed 18 Woburn Buildings, the Celtic stronghold of W. B. Yeats, took charge of his famous Mondays, precisely as he took charge of the South Lodge tennis parties, and succeeded in reducing him from master to disciple, The later Yeats which is now so universally admired, was unmistakable influenced by Pound. I shall never forget my surprise, when Ezra took me for the first time to one of Yeatss Mondays, at the way in which he dominated the room, distributed Yeatss cigarettes and Chianti, and laid down the law about poetry. Poor golden-bearded Sturge Moore, who sat in a corner with a large musical instrument by his side (on which he was never given a chance of performing) endeavoured to join in the discussion on prosody - a subject on which he believed himself not entirely ignorant, but Ezra promptly reduced him to a glum silence. My own emotions on this particular evening, since I do not possess Ezras transatlantic brio, were an equal blend of reverence and a desire to giggle. I was sitting next to Yeats on a settle when a young Indian woman in a sari came and squatted at his feet and asked him to sing Innisfree, saying that she was certain he had composed it to an Irish air. Yeats was anxious to comply with this request but, unfortunately, like so many poets, he was completely unmusical, indeed almost tone deaf. He compromised by a sort of dirge-like incantations calculated to send any unhappy giggler into hysterics. I bore it as long as I could, but at last the back of the settle began to shake, and I received the impact, of one of the poets nasty glances from behind his pince-nez. Mercifully I recovered, but it was an awful experience. (Douglas Goulding, South Lodge: reminiscences of Violet Hunt, Ford Madox Ford and The English Review Circle (Constable 1943, pp.48-9; papers of Alan Warner.
Poems and ballads of YI, ed., OLeary, John and Ellen, Hyde Todhunter, Rolleston, K Tynan, Yeats.
Thomas Davis, National and Historical Ballads, Songs and Poems by Thomas Davis (James Duffy 1869); Orange and Green, 54; Prose extracts on Irish nationality; A Nation Once Again, p.93; the Banks of the Lee, p.66; The Welcome, p.74.
See Michael Smith, attack [on Irish Lit. Movement?] in Lace Curtain no. 3.
Quotes WBY on SLIGO: It is a wonderfully beautiful day. The air is full of trembling light. The very feel of the familiar Sligo earth puts me in good spirits. I should like to live here always, not so much out of liking for the people as for the earth and the sky here, though I like the people too. I went to see yesterday a certain cobbler of my acquaintance and he discoursed over his cat as though he had walked out of one of Kickhams novels. Cats are not to be dipinded upon, he said; and then told me how a neighbours cat had gone up, the evening before, to the top of a tree, where a blackbird used to sing every night and pulled him down; and then he finished sadly with, Cats are not to be depinded upon. (Letter to Katharine Tynan, ?2Dec. 1891, 3 Blenheim Place; Letters, ed., Wade, p.49).
John Sherman (Chapman & Hall Shakespeare Head Press 1890). John Sherman, living at Ballah [Sligo] with his mothers moves to a job in his uncles office in London, advised to go by his quiet, constent companion, Mary Carton. In London he meets a sophisticated charmer, Margaret Leland and, in a rash moment becomes engaged to her. Realising his mistake he invites a clergymen friend, Rev William Howard, to stay with him and meet his bethrothed. The two fall for dach other and leave John free to return to Mary Carton, who first rejects him but finally comes to him at the end, realising that love is more than ambition. She had wanted him to make a figure in the world. QUOT, ... for love is based on inequality a friendship is on equality. (201); [Old women taking geese to Liverpool market:] Why are ye goin among them savages in London, Misther John? Why dont ye stay among your own people - for what have we in this life but a mouthful of air? (p.207); [Johns return to Ballah:] Again his eyes gladdened, for he knew he had found his present. He would live in his love and the days it passed. He would live that his law might be fulfilled. Now, was he sure of this truth - the saints on the one hand, the animals on the other, live in the moment as it passes. Thitherward had his days brought him. This was the one grain they had ground. To grind one grain is sufficient for a lifetime. (pp.268-9); ... an old day-dream of his - Inisfree. Its rocky centre, covered with many bushes, rose some forty feet above the lake. Often when life and its difficulties had seemed to him like the lessons of some elder boy given to a younger by mistake, it had seemed good to dream of going away to that islet and building a wooden hut there and burning a few years out rowing to and fro, fishing, or lying on the island slopes by day, and listening at night to the ripple of the water and the quivering of the bushes - full always of unknown creatures - and going out at morning, to see the islands edge marked by the feet of birds. (p.255) ALSO, Yeatss comments to Katharine Tynan: I have an ambition to be taken as an Irish Novelist, not as an English or cosmopolitan one choosing Ireland as a background. I studied my characters in Ireland and described a typical Irish feeling in Shermans devotion to Ballagh. A West of Ireland feeling, I might almost say, for like that of Allingham for Ballyshannon, it is West rather than National. Sherman belonged like Allingham to the small gentry who, in the West, at any rate, love their native places without perhaps loving Ireland. They do not travel and are shut off from England by the whole breadth of Ireland, with the result that they are forced to make their native town their world. I remember when we were children how intense our devotion was to all things in Sligo and still see in my mother the old feeling. I claim for this and other reasons that Sherman is as much an Irish novel as anything by, Banim or Griffin. Lady Wilde has written me an absurd and enthusiastic letter about it. She is queer enough to prefer it to my poems (Letter to Tynan, Wade, 187-8)
(Reply to Miss Hornimans request for the exclusive right to present his plays in England): I have thought carefully over your proposal of yesterday and have decided that it is impossible so far as I am concerned. I am not young enough to change my nationality - it would really amount to that. Though I wish for a universal audience, in playwriting there is always an immediate audience also. If I am to try and find the immediate audience in England I would fail through lack of understanding on my part, perhaps through lack of sympathy. I understand my own race and in all my work, lyric or dramatic I have thought of it. If the theatre fails I may or may not write plays -but I shell write for my own people - whether in love or hate of them matters little - probably I shall not know which it is. Nor can I make any permanent allocation of my plays while the Irish theatre may at any moment need my help ... (Letters; early 1908)
I know that my work has been done in every detail with a deliberate Irish aim, but it is hard for those who know it in fragments to know that, especially if the most that they know of me is about some contest with Irish opinion. You have put together the main outline of my work as it most concerns Ireland and have had the self-abnegation to interpret rather than to criticise. Your difficulties have come from my house being still unfinished, there are so many rooms and corridors that I am still building upon the foundations laid long ago ... (June 2 1916; Stone Cottage; Wade, ed., Letters, PP.500-01
Torchiana, W. B. Yeats and Georgian Ireland (Northwestern UP; OUP 1966):
I see Yeatss identity with the Protestant nation as primarily intellectual only partly social and hardly at all religious (xi-xii).
Industries we may have ... etc.; cited Torchiana, p.4-5; lecture given in NY, 1903-04; transcript.
As Dublin Castle with the help of the police keeps Ireland for England, so Trinity college with the help of the schoolmasters keeps the mind of Ireland for scholasticism with its accompanying weight of mediocrity. all noble life, all noble thought, depends primarily upon enthusiasm, and Trinity college, in abject fear of the national enthusiasm which is at her gates has shut itself off from every kind of ardour, form every kind of frenzy and exultant life ... (1892; Dublin Scholasticism and Trinity College, in United Ireland; cited Torchiana 10-11.
Yeats, of Val McClutchy: Carleton was a man of genius, but the habit of dividing men into sheep and goats for the purposes of partisan politics made havoc of what might have been a great novel United Ireland, 23.12.1893.
Albert [sic] Power, All the nobility of earth. I felt he did not mean it for that room alone but for lost traditin. How much o my own verse has not been but the repetition of those words. Lettter,s 795; Torchiana, pp.83-84.
Hugh Law, The Anglo-Irish, Irish Statesman, 17 Aug. 1924, p.497: Endless exceptions must be made; but for our present purposes it may be assumed that the typical anglo-Irishman is Protestant in faiht, hs some connection with the landowning class as it existed here from the end of the 17th century to the end of the 19th century, and cherishes family traditions of service to the Crown of these islands. (Torhciana, p.83-84)
The diatribes of Corkery are representative because they centre on the sol-called alien position of the Angloo-Irish as regards antive Irish religion, nationalism and soil. If not identified with Gaelic, Catholic peasant stock on was not Irish. (Torchiana 109)
Yeats: Nelsons Pillar should not be broken up. It represetned the feelling of Protestant Ireland for a man who helped to break the power of Napoleon. The life and work of the people who erected it is part of our tradition. I think we should accept the whole past of this nation and not pick and choose. (Evening Telegraph, 25 Aug. 1923.)
The greater proportion of my writings have been founded upon the old literature of Ireland. I have had to read it in translations, but it has been the chief illumination of my imagination all my life (1923). Senate Speeches, p.44;
Autobiog: Protestants in Ireland lacked hereditary passion and were open to bribery, cynicism, apathy. p.419.
On Ferguson: He lived in a class which, though a misunderstanding of the necessities of Irish Unionism, hated all Irish things, or felt for them at best a contemptuous, and patronising affection ... An Irish Patriot, Bookman, may 1896, p.50
Pref. to Gogarty, Wild Apples (1930): Yeats saw Berkeley as isolated between two nations: all as befits scatterred men in an ignorant country were solitaries.
On Irish Censorhip: the old rgime left Ireland perhaps the worst educated country in Northern Europe ... We were helots, and where you have the helot there the zealots reigns unchallenged. (Guardian, 22 Sept. 1928).
Torchiana: the real importance of Swift to Yeats appears to have been that of a bracer, an astringent, the acid cleanser of a poets own mind and work (Torchiana, p.166.)
[General Introduction for My Work, 1937:] A poet writes always of his personal life, in the his finest work out of its tragedy, whatever it be, remorse, lost love, or mere loneliness; he never speaks directly as to someone at the breakfast table, there is always a phantasmagoria .. he is more type than man, more passion than type. he is Lear, Romeo, Oedipus, Tiresias ... (E&I p.509); [John OLeary sent him to Davis and poets of The Nation:] I saw even more clearly than OLeary that they were not good poetry. I read nothing but romantic literature; hated that dry eighteenth-century rhetoric; but they had one quality I admired and admire: they were not separated individual men; they spoke or tried to speak out of a people to a people; behind them stretched the generations ... . I hated and still hate with an ever-growing hatred the literature of the point of view. I wanted, if my ignorance permitted, to get back to Homer, to those that fed at his table. I wanted to cry as all men cried, to laugh as all men laughed, and the Young Ireland poets when not writing mere politics had the same want ... (511). A generation before the Nation newspaper was founded the Royal Irish Academy had begun the study of ancient Irish literature. That study was as much a gift from the Protestant aristocracy which had created the Parliament as The Nation and its school, though Davis and Mitchel were Protestants, was a gift from the Catholic middle class where to create the Irish Free State. (511) some modern poets content that jazz and music -fall songs are the folk art of our time, that we should mould an art upon them; we Irish poets, modern men also, reject every folk art that does not go back to Olympus. Give me time, and a little youth and I will prove that even Johnny, I hardly knew ye, goes back. (516). I could not more have written in Gaelic than can those Indians write in English; Gaelic is my national but it is not my mother tongue (520). [Pt. III: Style and Attitude:] It was as a long time before I had made a language to my liking; I began to make It when I discovered some twenty years ago that I must seek, not as Wordsworth thought, words in common use, but a powerful and passionate syntax, and a complete coincidence between period and stanza. Because I need a passionate syntax for passionate subject-matter I compel myself to accept those traditional metres that have developed with the language. Ezra Pound, Turner, Lawrence wrote admirable free verse, I could not. I would lose myself, become joyless like those mad old women. The translators of the Bible, Sir Thomas Browne, certain translators from the Greek when translators still bothered about rhythm, created a form midway between prose and verse that seems natural to impersonal meditation; but all that is personal soon rots; it must be packed in ice or salt. Once when was delirium from pneumonia I dictated a letter to George Moore telling him to eat salt because it was a symbol of eternity; the delirium passed, I had no memory of that letter, but I must have meant what I now mean. If I wrote of personal love or sorrow in free verse, or in any rhythm that left it unchanged, amid all its accidence, I would be full of self-contempt because of my egotism and indiscretion, and foresee the boredom of my reader. I must choose a traditional stanza, even what I alter must seem traditional. I commit my emotion to shepherds, herdsmen, camel-drivers, learned men, Miltons or Shelleys Platonist, that tower Palmer drew. Talk to me of originality and I will turn on you with rage. I am a crowd, I am a lonely man, I am nothing. Ancient salt is best packing. The heroes of Shakespeare convey to us through their looks, or through the metaphorical patterns their speech, the sudden enlargement of their vision, their ecstasy at the approach of death: She should have died hereafter, Of many thousand kisses the poor last, Absent thee from felicity awhile. They have become God or Mother Goddess, the pelican, My baby at my breast, but all must be cold; no actress has ever sobbed when she played Cleopatra, even the shallow brain of a producer has never thought of such a thing. The supernatural is present, cold winds blow across our hands, upon our faces, the thermometer falls, and because of that cold we are hated by journalist and groundlings. There may be in this or that detail painful tragedy, but in the whole work none. I have heard Lady Gregory say, rejecting some play In the modern manner sent to the Abbey Theatre, Tragedy must be a joy to the man who dies. Nor is it any different with lyrics, songs, narrative poems; neither scholars nor the populace have sung or read anything generation after generation because of its pain. The maid of honour whose tragedy they sing must be lifted out of history with timeless pattern, she is one of the four Maries, the rhythm is old. and familiar, Imagination must dance, must be carried beyond feeling into the aboriginal ice. Is ice the correct word? I once boasted, copying the phrase from a letter of my fathers, that I would write a poem cold and passionate as the dawn. (Essays and Introductions, 1961; pp.521-23;
cf. p.509: I tried to make the language of poetry coincide with that of passionate normal speech ... [the poet never speaks directly as to someone at the breakfast table.]
When follow back my stream to its source I find two dominant desires: I wanted to get rid of irrelevant movement - the stage must become still that words might keep all their vividness - and I wanted vivid words. (Gen. Intro. for My Plays, 1937; E&I, p.527.)
The Celtic Twilight: Many of the tales in this book were told to be by one Paddy Flynn, a little bright-eyeed old man, who lived in a leaky and one-roomed caibin in the village of Ballisodare. ... These poor countrymen and countrywomen in their beliefs, and in their emotions, are many years nearer to that old Greek world, that set beauty beside the fountain of things, than are our men of learning. (Reprinted in Mythologies, p.28).
It is a pity for him that refuses the call of the daughters of the Sidhe, for he will find no comfort in the love of the women of the earth to the end of life and time, and the cold grave is in his heart forever. (The Twisting of the Rope; Mythologies, p.233.)
Yeats, speaking at Wolfe Tone banquet: first of all, we Irish do not desire, like the English, to build up a nation where there shall be a very rich class and a very poor class. ... I think that the best ideal for our people ... is that Ireland is going to become a country where, if there are few rich, there shall be nobody very poor. wherever men have tried to imagine a perfect life, they have imagined a place where men plough and sow and reap, not a place where there are great wheels turning and great chimneys vomiting smoke. Ireland will always be a country where men plough and sow and reap. p.36.