W.H. Davies was an inveterate vagabond, scoundrel and beggar. He travelled the roads and rails of the United Kingdom and the wide expanses of the United States for years. He saw all there was to see, felt his stomach empty and his limbs shiver, and then one day a long time afterwards he finally began to write.
Famous for his poem about the value of quiet moments and the need to observe the natural world around us Davies encourages every reader to slow down and take a moment. The tramp poet takes inspiration from a deeply atypical life and sculpts it into insight for us all.
Where many of us will have heard his famous ‘What good is life, if full of care’ refrain Davies has so much more to offer in terms of wanderlust, mourning and yearning, sometimes for a fire and sometimes for the road.
The poems in this volume range widely across subject matter from the freedom of unemployment to the satisfaction of rootlessness. Davies does not simply focus on glorifying the life of a ‘tramp’, he tells us about the bone weariness and the cold. The warmth of liquor as well as that of a warm bed.
The elites of the literature world were captivated by the freshness of the author’s voice within months of the Collected Poems publication. Its appeal as a release from the shackles of conventionality remains utterly undimmed in a world full of busy lives and keeping up with the latest fashion.