Wilfrid Gibson (Wilfrid Wilson Gibson) Biography
(1878–1962), (Wilfrid Wilson Gibson), New Numbers, 1914, Stonefolds, Krindlesdyke, Georgian Poetry, Battle, Fires, Livelihood
British poet, born at Hexham, Northumberland, the upland landscapes and communities of which strongly inform much of his writing. He became a social worker in the East End of London in 1912, when he met Edward Marsh and Rupert Brooke; he developed a close friendship with the latter, who bequeathed him a share in his posthumous royalties. With Lascelles Abercrombie and John Drinkwater, in 1912 he founded New Numbers, in which Brooke's celebrated 1914 sonnet sequence first appeared. His early collections included Stonefolds (1907), a series of short verse dialogues set in the Northumbrian fells, which also provide the setting for Krindlesdyke (1922), the most ambitious of his numerous verse-dramas. He established a firm reputation through his work's appearances in Georgian Poetry; his poetry is distinguished, however, from the sentimental pastoralism associated with the Georgians by the realism with which he presents the rigours of rural experience. Battle (1915) contains the majority of the poems relating to his period of active service on the Western Front, which remain his best-known work. The increasingly urban social consciousness that becomes evident in Fires (1912) is central to the long poems of Livelihood (1917), which base their narratives in documentary accounts of industrial conditions. Collected Poems, 1905–1925 was published in 1926. His later collections, which continue to display his concern with the experiences of factory workers, include Hazards (1930), The Alert (1940), and The Searchlights (1943).
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