Frederic Manning was an Australian poet and novelist.
Born in Sydney, Manning was the son (one of eight children) of local politician Sir William Patrick Manning. His family were Catholics, of Irish origin. A sickly child (asthma), Manning was educated exclusively at home. As a teenager he formed a close friendship with Arthur Galton, a scholarly man who was Secretary to the Governor of New South Wales. Galton went home to England in 1898, taking Manning with him, but Manning returned to Australia in 1900. In 1903, he finally settled in the UK.
Early years in England
Manning moved in with Galton, who had become the Vicar of Edenham, a ... more »
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Frederic Manning Poems
These are the damned circles Dante trod, Terrible in hopelessness, But even skulls have their humour,
Yea, she hath passed hereby, and blessed the sheaves, And the great garths, and stacks, and quiet farms,
Endless lanes sunken in the clay, Bays, and traverses, fringed with wasted herbage, Seed-pods of blue scabious, and some lingering blooms; And the sky, seen as from a well,
A frail and tenuous mist lingers on baffled and intricate branches; Little gilt leaves are still, for quietness holds every bough;
Hush ye! Hush ye! My babe is sleeping. Hush, ye winds, that are full of sorrow! Hush, ye rains, from your weary weeping!
We are here in a wood of little beeches: And the leaves are like black lace Against a sky of nacre.
Comments about Frederic Manning
These are the damned circles Dante trod,
Terrible in hopelessness,
But even skulls have their humour,
An eyeless and sardonic mockery:
Sitting with streaming eyes in the acrid smoke,
That murks our foul, damp billet,
Chant bitterly, with raucous voices
As a choir of frogs
In hideous irony, our patriotic songs.