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A GREEN GARLAND


 

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Title:

A Green Garland

   

 

Print
Variations
:

State (a):

A small number of copies bound in green cloth covered boards.

Pages untrimmed.
Upper cover lettered in gilt script ‘A Green Garland’.
7 3/4” x 5 1/4”.

State (b):

Bound in a green paper cover.
Upper cover lettered in gilt script ‘A Green Garland’.
7 3/4” x 5 1/4”.

 
Publisher: Young Cambridge Press / Probsthain & Co.  
Printer:    
Published At: Bedford/London.  
Date: 1908.  
Edition: First Edition.  
Pages:

56 + 2 Pages of Advertisements.

 
Price:

State (b) priced at 1 shilling and sixpence

 
Remarks:

Errata slip bound in at Page 1.  Includes 2 pages of publisher’s advertisements at the end of the book.
The majority of the poems in this book had previously been published in The Agnostic Review.

 
Pagination:
[  i] Half-title
[  ii] Copyright
[  iii] Title-page
[  iv] Blank
[  v] Dedication
[  vi] Blank
[  vii] Author's Note
[  viii] Blank
[  ix] Contents
[  x] Blank
[1-55] Text
[  56] Blank
[  i] Advertisement for Aleister Crowley’s “An Appeal to the American Republic”
[  ii] Advertisement for various Probsthain & Co. publications
 
Contents:

- The Garden of Youth
- The First Poet
- The Eagle and the Serpent
- Two Sonnets
- Between the Spheres
- Ballade of the Daisy
- An Old Song
- The Swan Song
- My Homeland
- The Fugitive
- Carmen Triumphans
- A Song of the Promise of Dawn
- Serenade
- A Leaf from Walt Whitman
- Young Summer
- To Shelley
- A Recall
- An Agnostic View
- A Lullaby
- Three Singers
- A Song of Freedom
- The Dream
- A Song of Dawn
  

 

Author’s
Working
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Other
Known
Editions:

   
Reviews:

     This little volume deals largely with the death of the old gods and the  dawn of a new era when men shall stand alone, and the author has been inspired by some of the greatest among modern names, by Spencer, Nietsche and Walt Whitman.  Here is a fine stanza in the style of James Thomson on Herbert Spencer:

     The vast colossus of the latter days

        Huge silver statue in the realm of Thought

     With arms firm-folded, and calm upward gaze,

        Stands on the massive pile his hands have wrought.

        And something of the glamour hath he caught

     That to the gods pertains; the sky dark-blue

     Sheds over him the calm undying line

        Of intellect; the brow's most noble rise

        Endomes the depths of the deep-seated eyes.

 

     Though imitative at present to a considerable degree, the writer undoubtedly possesses the temperament of a poet.

 

 

B. P. O'N., The Occult Review, September 1910

______________________________
  

     Poetry is the blossom of many minds, the fruit of few. Whether the fruit of Mr. Victor B. Neuburg’s matured intelligence will take the shape of verse or not, it would be rash to prophesy. Whether the author of this little book will become a great poet like Byron, a writer of philosophy, or a provider of lyrics for musical comedy, such as Mr. Adrian Ross (who in his salad days at the University published a volume of serious poems full of promise), it is impossible to tell. Of one thing, however, one is certain: the existence of promise in this book. There is something in it; something which makes one feel certain that there is more to come, whatever form it may take. As far as the verse is concerned there is in this volume something than mere promise; the performance is at times remarkable: there is beauty not only of thought and invention—but also of expression and rhythm, especially rhythm. There is a lilt in Mr. Neuburg’s poems; he has the impulse to sing, and makes his readers feel that impulse. He has, perhaps, not yet found the right things to sing about. A poem called “Young Summer” has a taking, captivating beauty, makes the heart sing, and suggests the sights and sounds of youth, of spring, of first love, and the joy and the brightness of the springtime of love—lines like these:

 

          And the bloom is on the clover, and the speedwell in the shade.

          Life and love have drawn us onward; on the open road we fare,

          And the mighty hills grow taller, and we linger here and there

          To catch the breath of panting day, hot breathed beneath the sun.

          And the world spreads wide around us, and the battle’s almost won!

          The sunlight brings the thrushes’ song; the hidden cuckoos call:

          The Spring’s white veil is cast aside, life enters love’s own hall,

 

exemplify the qualities indicated above. In the poem called “Between the Spheres” there is imagination of a striking kind. In nearly all Mr. Neuburg’s verses the rhythm and the lilt are strong enough to seize the reader’s pleased attention. The sonnets are less satisfactory. One notices throughout the influence of Shelley, and in some degree that of Walt Whitman: this inclines one to believe in the promise of Mr. Neuburg’s poetic gifts, since there is no poet who did not begin by singing like someone else. The faults of the book are the faults of youth, and those are good faults. For instance, in Mr. Neuburg’s poem on Rome, in honour of the Free Thought Congress held there in 1904, the thought, which is manifestly sincere, makes one feel inclined to smile. “Yesterday Rome, tomorrow truth,” sings the poet. Rome has outlived many things, and one must be very young if one seriously believes that it will not outlive the Free Thought Congress held there in September, 1904!

The Morning Post, 21 May 1908

______________________________
  

     There is a certain grim power in some of the imaginings concerning death, as “The Dream” and “The Recall,” and any reader with a liking for verse of an unconventional character will find several pieces after his taste.

The Daily Telegraph, 29 May 1908.

______________________________
 

     Here is a poet of promise.

The Daily Chronicle, 13 May 1908.

______________________________
 

     It is not often that energy and poetic feeling are united so happily as in this little book.

—The Morning Leader, July 10, 1908.

______________________________
 

     There is promise and some fine lines in these verses.

The Times, 11 July 1908

______________________________
 

     After the first page or so of “A Green Garland,” Verlaine’s lines come into one’s mind:

 

          De la musique avant toute chose

          Et pour cela préfère l’impair.

 

Mr. Neuburg’s gods are Youth, Truth, Progress, Love, and “Mighty Reason”; but he says that all the gods are dead.

 

          Prends l’éloquence et tords-lui le cou.

 

And we have here the diverting spectacle of a disciple of Nietzsche eloquently celebrating a Freethought Congress, glorifying Truth and Progress, and burning with

indignation at the suggestion that a memorial tablet to Herbert Spencer,

 

          The vast colossus of the later days

          And silver statue in the realm of thought!

 

should be placed in Westminster Abbey, the fane of the hated and pallid-spirited Galileans. It is not to be inferred from this that “A Green Garland ” is without merit, despite the fact that a quotation from the “Daily Chronicle ” at the head of a page might deter one from reading any more in that book. Mr. Neuburg has more intellect than imagination, and the beauty of young summer, the heat of the sun, and the scent of blossoms stir him to sing rapturously, sometimes obscurely, of the Dawn and the Day, when life will not be sicklied o‘er with the pale cast of other worldliness. For the new humanity he builds the lofty rhyme ; but it is to be feared, alas ! that the new humanity will prefer more subtle rhythms and broken cadences, the song that will come and go like the wind on the leaf or the bourdon f a blond bee hovering over a bank of swaying mignonette.

The New Age, F. S. Flint, 11 July 1908

 
       
   

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