Go to Site Index for Ivor Gurney, Poet Composer
Ivor Gurney in 1915 - Go to Home Page

Gurney's Poetry

Gurney Greeting Cards, featuring Gurney Poems
Gurney's Essay The Springs of Music
Books of Poetry & Correspondence
Poetry on War 
Lyrics of Gurney's Songs
Poetry on Recording
Gurney's poem, Beauty



Coming Soon:

Poetry on Music
Poetry on Gloucester

From the trenches of war, 
on a page of a letter which is 
spattered and stained, 
with the note, "Bully beef at fault," 
one finds the following poem:

[From Ivor Gurney: Collected Letters
Edited by R. K. R. Thornton. 
Northumberland: Mid Northumberland Arts Group; 
Manchester: Carcanet, 1991, pp.204-205, 
a letter postmarked Feb 9, 1917.]


I cannot live with Beauty out of mind.
I search for her and desire her all the day;
Beauty, the choicest treasure you may find,
Most joyous and sweetest word his lips can say.
The crowded heart in me is quick with visions
And sweetest music born of a brighter day.

But though the trees have long since lost their green
And I, the exile, can but dream of things
Grown magic in the mind; I watch the sheen
Of frost, and hear the song Orion sings.
Yet O, the star-born passion of Beethoven,
Man's consolation sung on the quivering strings.

Beauty immortal, not to be hid, desire
Of all men, each in his fashion, give me the strong
Thirst past satisfaction for thee, and fire
Not to be quenched . . . . O lift me, bear me along,
Touch me, make me worthy that men may seek me
For Beauty, Mistress Immortal, Healer of Wrong.


 To contact the Ivor Gurney webmaster,
write to David Kenneth Smith.
Ivor Gurney in 1915 -- Go to Top of Page
Bibliography | Biography | Books & Articles | Call for Help | Chronology | Contemporaries | Correspondence | Discuss | FAQ | Friends | Greeting Cards | Gurney Society | Home | Journal | Links | Music | Music Scores | New | Participate | Perspectives | Photo Album | Poetry | Poetry Books | Programs | Purpose | Questions | Recordings | Song Lyrics | Springs of Music | Thematic Catalogue | Today | Top | Towards a Bibliography | War Poetry | Who’s Who | Window & Gravestone | Works List

The Official Website of the Ivor Gurney Society