Rose Macaulay on War Poetry

Or not exactly Rose Macaulay, but Gideon, one of her narrators in Potterism (1920). He and Peacock co-edit the radical magazine Fact.

Peacock also accepts poetry; poetry about the war, by people like Johnny Potter. Everyone knows that school of poetry by heart now; of course it was particularly fashionable just after the war. Johnny Potter did it much like other men. Anyone can do it. One takes some dirty, horrible incident or sight of the battle-front and describes it in loathesome detail, and then, by way of contrast, describes some fat and incredibly bloodthirsty woman or middle-aged clubman at home, gloating over the glorious war. I always thought it a great bore, and sentimental at that. But it was the thing for a time, and people seemed to be impressed by it, and Peacock, who encouraged young men, often to their detriment, would take it for the Fact, though that sort of cheap and popular appeal to sentiment was the last thing the Fact was out for.

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