Hopkins At Easter

Some Gerard Manley Hopkins for Easter. Here is the final stanza of The Wreck Of The Deutschland:


Dame, at our door

Drowned, and among our shoals,

Remember us in the roads, the heaven-haven of the Reward:

Our King back, oh, upon English souls!

Let him easter in us, be a dayspring to the dimness of us, be a crimson-cresseted east,

More brightening her, rare-dear Britain, as his reign rolls,

Pride, rose, prince, hero of us, high-priest,

Our hearts’ charity’s hearth’s fire, our thoughts’ chivalry’s throng’s Lord.

By Pointy Town Horse-Trough I Sat Down And Wept

“In place of a frog, we discover a point of hard, shrunken, cracked substance, neither frog nor sole. We cut the clenches and take off the relic of ignorance and barbarism, throwing it with hearty good-will into the only place fit to receive it – the pile of scrap-iron.” – John E Russell, Rational Horse-Shoeing, 1873

In this passage, Russell is clearly casting aside “ignorance and barbarism”, perhaps to atone for the mayhem caused by his earlier work Irrational Horse-Shoeing. It was the latter book which had a profound influence on Dobson, who is known to have read it from cover to cover at least forty times. Of course, the pamphleteer had no interest in horses per se – he could barely tell a Knabstrup from a Yonaguni with his glasses on – but the panting urgency of Russell’s prose style as he describes various completely bonkers approaches to shoeing horses was something Dobson spent his entire curdled and despicable life trying to match. And so should you.