To date Wyeth remains almost completely unknown. His book of war sonnets, This Man's Army: A War in Fifty-odd Sonnets, was first published in 1928 and reprinted the following year. The reviews of his book were not only favorable for the most part, but often remarkably prescient. And yet the book went unnoticed by the literary world, and it sank into oblivion.
In 2008 This Man's Army was republished by the University of South Carolina Press as part of Matthew Bruccoli's Great War Series of neglected WWI literary classics. Once again, the reviews have been favorable, and strong, but few in number.
The real work of assessing Wyeth's place in the literature of the First World War has yet to be undertaken. This blog represents an attempt to get the ball rolling, to approach Wyeth's work from a number of angles, and so start a number of conversations which I hope others will take up. In addition to essays, and back-and-forth discussions, links to previously published essays and reviews on Wyeth will be provided, as well as links to other sites devoted to the literature of the First World War.
All opinions, comments & questions are welcome. A reputation isn't built in a day, there is much to be considered, and the conversation may continue into the small hours. So pour yourself a pint, pull up a chair, stoke up your stogie, and join in. Never mind if your rank is PFC or PhD, or if your outfit is the Blackstrap Irregulars or Harvard U. We leave all that stuff at the door. All that matters here is what you have to say.
The background image used on this blog is a watercolor by Sir Muirhead Bone, "The bend of the River Somme near Corbie", which is also the location for one of Wyeth's sonnets, "Corbie to Sailley-le-Sec". It was painted in 1918, the same year depicted in the sonnet. Its use here is made possible through the generosity of the Imperial War Museum, under the terms of its Non-Commericial License.