This new opera  based on David Jones’ epic war poem “In Parenthesis” had the audience in tears 

Source: This new opera had the audience in tears » The Spectator

In Parenthesis is a multilayered thicket of fractured modernist language and Celtic and Catholic myth, with a verbal music that should really be a warning light to any composer, let alone a librettist.


Nikolai Gumilev: A Silver Age Russian poet who lived a richly tapestried life and served in WW 1

Source: Nikolai Gumilev: A Silver Age poet who lived a richly tapestried life | Russia Beyond The Headlines

Although many renowned poets from that era composed poems with a patriotic or military theme, only two volunteered to fight: Gumilev and Benedikt Livshits.

When the First World War broke out, Gumilev volunteered immediately. He proved himself to be a brave soldier with a keen desire for glory and was decorated twice with the Cross of St. George, ultimately becoming an officer.


The Poet Who Loved the War: Ivor Gurney by Tim Kendall

Documentary presented by writer Tim Kendall which tells the remarkable story of the First World War soldier-poet who broke all the rules. Ivor Gurney wasn’t an officer but a private who bizarrely joined up in the hope that the ordered army life would help ease a mental health condition. Initially this shock therapy worked, but he was eventually shot and gassed and spent the last 15 years of his life in an asylum.”


David Jones: The Greatest War Poet From the Greatest War

David Jones was an epic poet and his recollection of his war experiences, an epic poem entitled In Parenthesis, was first published by Faber and Faber in 1937, with a foreword by T.S. Eliot (then a partner in that publishing house) who called it “a work of genius.”In Parenthesis defies classification. A “proem” or a piece of epic “proesy”, In Parenthesis can read for pages (and pages) like some kind of disjointed post-Modern novel. It goes almost whole sections without traditional poetical line-breaks. It was heavily influenced by James Joyce—especially Ulysses,

Source: David Jones: The Greatest War Poet From the Greatest War |Blogs |

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“Our fathers lied”: Rudyard Kipling as a war poet

My_Boy_Jack_John_KiplingThe privileged poets of the Great War are those who fought in it—Rosenberg, Owen, Sassoon. This is natural and human, but it is not fair. Kipling is one of the finest poets of the War, but he writes as a parent, a civilian, a survivor—all three of them compromised positions.

Source: “Our fathers lied”: Rudyard Kipling as a war poet | OUPblog

Official website of composer Iain Bell | OPERA

Welsh National Opera has announced that WNO have commissioned Iain Bell to compose an operatic adaptation of David Jones’ World War One epic poem ‘In Parenthesis’ to mark both the company’s 70th anniversary and the centenary of the Battle of the Somme. ‘In Parenthesis’ will be scored for the full forces of the WNO orchestra and chorus and will receive its world premiere in Cardiff in 2016 with two further performances at the Royal Opera House.

Source: Official website of composer Iain Bell | OPERA