An Annotated Bibliography
of Work on and by Archibald Lampman Published Between 1979 and 1990
by Justin W. Fox
Over the years, Archibald Lampman has attracted steady critical attention, beginning
with a number of favourable reviews of his first book of poetry, Among the Millet
(1888).1 Early criticism focused on Lampman's affiliation with Nature, his
descriptive powers, his focus on landscape, and his ability to compose fine sonnets. To
some extent, these ideas have remained at the forefront of Lampman scholarship to this
day. But there has also been a steady widening of the critical focus. By 1895, questions
of influence began to be raised, and this has remained a popular topic for critics of
subsequent generations. Initially, parallels were drawn between Lampman and Keats; by
1900, Arnold and Wordsworth were added to the list of influences. In 1934, W. E. Collin
proposed that "The City of the End of Things" was influenced by James Thomson's
"The City of Dreadful Night," and in 1951, John Sutherland offered a line by
line comparison of "The City of the End of Things" with Poe's "The City in
In the period which this bibliography
covers---1979-1990---questions of influence have remained important to critics. While some
recent critics have dismissed Lampman's poetry as derivative of the English Romantics
and/or Victorians, most of the current writing has explored the extent to which Lampman
appropriated certain aspects of Romanticism and Victorianism and utilized them in the
composition of poetry which is distinctively Canadian. John Ower offers a comparison of
Lampman's "The Frogs" with Tennyson's "The Lotos-Eaters" in which the
emphasis is placed on Lampman's ability to "translate" the setting and effect of
Tennyson's poem into a distinctly Canadian poem with a Canadian environment.3
In a similar study, D.M.R. Bentley suggests that although Lampman's "The City of the
End of Things" may have been influenced by Wordsworth's Excursion, it retains
a "personal perspective."4 Richard Arnold takes a comparatively new
angle in exploring the influence of Emerson on Lampman in two essays written during the
1980s.5 Arnold suggests that Lampman first embraced Emersonian
Transcendentalism before discarding it in favour of a more realistic (although more
troubling) personal vision of man and his environment. L.R. Early supports this position:
in his book-length study of Lampman,6 he addresses the question of influence, and while he
finds that some poems are derivative of the writers who had gone before Lampman, he
acknowledges that Lampman was an individual writer who possessed individual talents.
Through the influence of other writers, Lampman was able to define and establish his own
modes of writing, out of which he composed some very "Canadian" poems.
Critics have also traditionally been interested in Lampman's
biography and its relationship to his work. Noting that his poetry often reflects a
troubled tone, some commentators have argued that it resulted from the fact that Lampman
was unhappy with his life in Ottawa and sought to escape into the comforting arms of
Nature. Some other critics have focused on the early death of Arnold, Lampman's first son,
as a major reason for some of Lampman's "troubled" verse. The most recent (and
perhaps most controversial) extensive exploration of Lampman's biography has focused on
Lampman's relationship with Katherine Waddell. Major studies have been dedicated to this
question, most notably by Bruce Nesbitt and Margaret Coulby Whitridge in the 1970s.7
While much of the evidence is circumstantial, the topic has remained popular among
critics. W.J. Keith believes the relationship was "probably platonic."8
Early and Anne Archer suggest that Lampman did, indeed, love Waddell, but neither critic
argues for the existence of an intimate relationship.9 Joyce Wayne shares
Whitridge's view of the intimacy of the relationship by stating unequivocally that Lampman
lived with Waddell "for some months."10 Possibly as a result of the
interest in Lampman's relationship with Waddell, more attention has been paid to Lampman's
long narrative poem The Story of an Affinity in the period covered by this
bibliography than ever before. Early, Archer, and Bentley have recognized the poem as, in
Bentley's words, a work of "wish fulfilment": a semi-autobiographical work which
portrays the love relationship all three critics feel Lampman desired with Waddell.11
Much of the remaining critical writing on Lampman has dealt
with Lampman's visionary development. Early critics noticed the curious absence of man in
much of Lampman's nature poetry. More recently, others have noted that Lampman's persona
was inseparable from the scenes contained in his nature visions. Still other modern
readings have focused on Lampman's frequent use of the first person pronoun as an
indication that the poet was somewhat removed from, and independent of, the scenes he
depicted. However, the bulk of the more current writing about Lampman's vision has focused
on Lampman's use of the word "dream" in his poetry. While a number of critics
have noticed the recurrent use of the word, Sandra Djwa was the first critic to explore
Lampman's "dreams" at length.12 In her opinion, dream in Lampman's
poetry functions as something of an escape from the pain of reality. Lampman found great
solace in Nature, and through the dream vision, he was able to transcend the troubles of
his world and thereby achieve a greater peace. When Lampman is unable to ignore the
reality of his world, the dream deteriorates into nightmare. Critics have argued generally
that Lampman felt Nature to be a life-giving, benevolent entity while the urban locale was
a malevolent, apocalyptic environment of decay and death.
This bibliography clearly shows that the critical interest in
Lampman's dream vision has continued. Kathy Mezei, in comparing Lampman's poetry with that
of Emile Nelligan, a Quebec poet writing at the same time as Lampman, finds that Lampman
was able to "nurture [his] delicate sensibility" by escaping into dreams.13
Richard Arnold argues that dreams allowed Lampman to escape the harsh realities of his
world in his early poetry, while later, in Alcyone (1899), Lampman's third book of
poetry, the poet "separated dream and reality, instead of trying to conflate them,
and articulated some very frightening, realistic, and moving poems."14
With Bentley we find what is arguably the most detailed and sophisticated discussion of
Lampman's vision.15 Lampman's poetry is discussed in relation to a
"coherent cosmology or `world view'" which can be divided into quadrants
covering the four seasons, various times of day, and various points in history. The
"noon/Summer" quadrant is identified as the most important to Lampman. It is
here that the positive visions of the world and man's place in it are likely to occur.
Conversely, it is through the "midnight/Winter" quadrant that Lampman's
nightmare visions evolve. For Bentley, Lampman's visionary poetry shows that the poet
possessed a "subtle and alert consciousness," a "clarity of vision"
which enabled him to see and understand the complexities of the world around him.
As a whole, this bibliography covers what is arguably the most
important period of writing on Lampman. Between 1979-90, there was a discernible rise in
interest from critics and editors: this bibliography alone lists nearly one-fifth of the
total critical output on Lampman since 1883.16 The increase in critical
attention may be attributable to the fact that writers now have access to previously
unpublished work, and some new editions of Lampman's have superseded older, less
responsibly edited volumes. In 1986, Bentley's new edition of Lampman's The Story of an
Affinity appeared, providing critics with the first publication of the complete,
unaltered text of the poem.17 Prior to Bentley's edition, The Story of an
Affinity was printed in The Poems of Archibald Lampman (1900), but the editor,
Duncan Campbell Scott, had taken a number of editorial liberties with the poem, in some
cases effectively obscuring the meaning of the text.18 Similarly, Arthur
Bourinot's editions of the Lampman-E.W. Thomson correspondence have been superseded by the
excellent scholarly edition edited by Helen Lynn.19
Previously unpublished work by Lampman also appeared in the
period which this bibliography covers. Sue Mothersill edited Lampman's important essay
"Style"; Michael Gnarowski and Lynn prepared the correspondence between Lampman
and Lighthall; Tracy Ware edited letters Lampman wrote to Bliss Carman while Carman was
literary editor of a New York magazine from 1890-92; and Early collected twenty-five
"fugitive" poems by Lampman.20
While critics and students of Lampman are still waiting for
the publication of a modern biography and the appearance of scholarly editions of
Lampman's poetry and prose, the new publications listed above have enabled researchers to
come closer to a complete understanding of the poet and his writing. Regarding critical
work, a greater diversity of topics has been explored recently, and more attention has
been paid to the full scope of Lampman's talent. As we approach the end of the twentieth
century and the one hundredth anniversary of Lampman's death, he continues to attract and
intrigue readers and critics. Unquestionably, Lampman has achieved the stature his friends
and early critics always felt he deserved.
* * *
This bibliography is intended to provide the Lampman student and scholar with a useful,
comprehensive research tool. With the exception of reference book entries,21
the bibliography includes all work on and by Lampman published between 1981 and 1990, with
selections from the years 1979 and 1980. This last point requires explication. Originally,
this work was to encompass all material published in the decade 1981-90, thus picking up
where George Wicken's excellent bibliography left off.22 But there are a few
pieces of writing dating from 1979 and 1980 which were not included in Wicken's work,
undoubtedly because they came to his attention after his bibliography had gone to press.23
Since the current bibliography was planned as a companion volume to Wicken's compilation,
it was decided (in the interest of comprehensiveness) that the bibliography would be
expanded to include those works from 1979 and 1980 which do not appear in Wicken's study.
It must be noted that every attempt has been made to compile
the most comprehensive bibliography possible. The investigation began with a search of the
Modern Languages Association (MLA) bibliography on CD-ROM. This produced twenty-six works,
of which twenty-four proved to contain substantial references to Lampman.24
Next, the Canadian Periodical Index was searched, and it provided two additional entries.
The remaining eight entries were gleaned from the year-end indexes to periodicals, and
from the bibliographies and notes which accompanied other writing on Lampman. To my
knowledge, no Lampman materials published between 1981 and 1990 have been overlooked;
furthermore, this bibliography effectively completes the list of works published in 1979
and 1980 which appears in Wicken's bibliography.
The bibliography contains two sections: the first section
lists primary sources; the second deals with all books, parts of books, and articles which
contain information on Lampman. Unlike Wicken's bibliography, which lists the primary
sources in the first section (most without annotations of any kind), and lists and
annotates the critical introductions to the primary sources in the section covering all
critical material on Lampman, the current study offers annotations to the various
introductions together with useful notes about the contents of the publications in section
The annotations which appear are intended to summarize the
nature and scope of the individual works listed in the bibliography. To this end, every
attempt has been made to enable the reader to distinguish what aspect of Lampman's life
and work is being discussed in a particular study. I have tried to emphasize any
especially interesting or original points which may have been raised by the individual
writers, and the works have been listed chronologically in order to show the development
of trends in the current criticism.
In cases where two or more listed works by the same author
share information, or when any one of the listed works can help to elucidate the meaning
of another listed study by the same author, I have provided cross-references. When the
information contained in any one commentary relates in a general way to other studies by
the same critic, the cross-reference appears immediately following the bibliographic
entries for those works. I have, in some cases, added additional cross-references in the
body of my annotations when specific common ground between two or more works exists.
Notes to the Introduction
1 George Wicken lists and annotates six reviews of Among the Millet which
appeared between December, 1888 and December, 1889. See pp. 142-43 in "Archibald
Lampman: An Annotated Bibliography."
2 For a good discussion of Keats' influence, see A.W. Crawford, "Archibald
Lampman," Acta Victoriana 17 (Dec. 1895): 77-81, rpt. in Archibald Lampman,
ed. Michael Gnarowski (Toronto: Ryerson, 1970). L.J. Burpee, "Archibald Lampman: A
Canadian Poet," in North American Notes and Queries 1.3 (Aug. 1900), 84-92,
provides references to the influence of Keats, Wordsworth, Arnold. See Collin's essay
"Archibald Lampman," in Gnarowski for the James Thomson-Lampman connection; and
Sutherland's "Edgar Allan Poe in Canada," in Gnarowski for Lampman-Poe
3 John Ower, "The Story of an Affinity: Lampman's `The Frogs' and Tennyson's `The
4 D.M.R. Bentley, "A Thread of Memory and the Fabric of Archibald Lampman's `City
of the End of Things'" (B9).
5 See "`The Clearer Self': Lampman's Transcendental-Visionary Development"
(B6), and "`Thoughts Grow Keen and Clear': A Look at Lampman's Revisions" (B16).
6 Archibald Lampman (B19).
7 See Nesbitt, "A Gift of Love: Lampman and Life," Canadian Literature 50
(Autumn 1971): 35-40, rpt. in Colony and Confederation: Early Canadian Poets and Their
Background, ed. George Woodcock (Vancouver: Univ. of British Columbia Press, 1974):
142-47; and Whitridge, "Introduction" in Lampman's Kate, Late Love Poems of
Archibald Lampman, 1887-97 (Ottawa: Borealis, 1975): 11-23.
8 See "Archibald Lampman" (B3).
9 Early, in his Archibald Lampman (B19), suggests that speculation about the
relationship "should be treated cautiously"; Archer indicates in "The Story
of an Affinity: D.G. Jones, Archibald Lampman, and `Kate These Flowers'" (B27) that
Lampman's love for Waddell was not reciprocated. See also Early's "Lampman's Love
10 See Joyce Wayne, "Shouting Love: Milton Acorn Remembered" (B25).
11 See Early, (B12); Archer, (B27); and Bentley, "Introduction" in The
Story of an Affinity (A4).
12 Sandra Djwa, "Lampman's Fleeting Vision," Canadian Literature 56
(Spring 1973): 22-39, rpt. in Colony and Confederation: Early Canadian Poets and Their
Background, ed. George Woodcock, (Vancouver: Univ. of British Columbia Press, 1974):
124-41. For another important discussion of Lampman's dream vision, see Roy Daniells,
"Lampman and Roberts," in Literary History of Canada: Canadian Literature in
English, ed. Carl F. Klinck, (Toronto: Univ. of Toronto Press, 1976): 405-21.
13 Kathy Mezei, "Lampman and Nelligan: Dream Landscapes" (B1).
14 Richard Arnold, "`The Clearer Self': Lampman's Transcendental-Visionary
Development" (B6). See also Arnold's "`Thoughts Grow Keen and Clear': A Look at
Lampman's Revisions" (B16).
15 D.M.R. Bentley, "Watchful Dreams and Sweet Unrest: An Essay on the Vision of
Archibald Lampman" (B8). See also Bentley's "A Thread of Memory and the Fabric
of Archibald Lampman's `City of the End of Things'" (B9).
16 Wicken lists 133 pieces of critical writing on Lampman between 1883 and 1980
(including editorial introductions to new editions of Lampman's work), with six works
dating from 1979 and 1980. The current text lists twenty-seven critical examinations (in
addition to seven critical introductions to new offerings of Lampman's poetry, prose, and
correspondence), for a total of 34 entries.
17 D.M.R. Bentley, ed., The Story of an Affinity (A4).
18 Scott altered the spelling and punctuation of Lampman's manuscript for The
Story of an Affinity, and L.R. Early has pointed out that 251 lines which appear in
the manuscript held by the Library of Parliament, Ottawa, were omitted from The Poems
of Archibald Lampman. See Early's Archibald Lampman (B19), p. 161.
19 Bourinot's Archibald Lampman's Letters to Edward William Thomson (1890-1898) (Ottawa:
Bourinot, 1956), and The Letters of Edward William Thomson to Archibald Lampman
(1891-1897) (Ottawa: Bourinot, 1957) are hampered by errors in transcription,
insufficient annotations, silent editorial changes to spelling and punctuation, and
incomplete texts of the letters. For the scholarly edition, see Helen Lynn, An
Annotated Edition of the Correspondence between Archibald Lampman and Edward William
Thomson (1890-1898) (A1).
20 See Sue Mothersill, "Style" (A2); Gnarowski and Lynn, "The Letters of
Lampman to Lighthall (1888-1898)" (A5); Tracy Ware, "Letters to Carman, 1880-92,
from Campbell, Lampman, and Scott" (A7); and L.R. Early, "Twenty-Five Fugivite
Poems by Achibald Lampman" (A3).
21 The decision to exclude reference book entries was based primarily on the need to
restrict the length of the bibliography for this publication. Nevertheless, these works
deserve mention. See W.J. Keith, "Archibald Lampman," Profiles in Canadian
Literature, 1980; Zailig Pollock "Lampman, Archibald," The Oxford
Companion to Canadian Literature, 1983; Michael Gnarowski, "Lampman,
Archibald," The Canadian Encyclopedia, 1988; and Bruce Nesbitt,
"Archibald Lampman," Dictionary of Literary Biography, 1990.
22 George Wicken, comp, "Archibald Lampman: An Annotated Bibliography," in The
Annotated Bibliography of Canada's Major Authors eds. Robert Lecker and Jack David,
vol. 2 (Downsview, ON: ECW, 1980): 97-146. This publication is the first reliable
checklist to include essentially all of the material on and by Lampman dating to 1980.
23 The unlisted works are as follows: Helen Lynn, An Annotated Edition of the
Correspondence between Archibald Lampman and Edward William Thomson (1898-1898); Sue
Mothersill's "Style"; Kathy Mezei, "Lampman and Nelligan: Dream
Landscapes"; D.M.R. Bentley, "Pan and the Confederation Poets"; W.J. Keith,
"Archibald Lampman"; and John P. Matthews, "Duncan Campbell Scott and `The
Moment of Becoming'." These works are annotated her as A1, A2, B1, B2, B3, and B4
24 Ken Norris' "The Beginnings of Canadian Modernism," Canadian Poetry:
Studies, Documents, Reviews 11 (Fall-Winter 1982): 56-66, and Sandra Djwa's "A
Developing Tradition," Essays on Canadian Writing 21 (Spring 1981): 32-52 are
listed as Lampman materials in the MLA bibliography; however, I could find only one
reference to Lampman in each work. When Lampman's name did appear, it was only to identify
him as one of the Confederation group of poets. Since they contained no significant
comment on Lampman or his work, these articles are not annotated here.
A. Poetry and Prose by Archibald Lampman Published in Books and Periodicals.
A1 An Annotated Edition of the Correspondence between Archibald Lampman and
Edward William Thomson (1890-1898). Edited with an introduction by Helen Lynn. Ottawa:
Tecumseh, 1980. 252 pp.
This edition of the correspondence between Lampman and Thomson includes all the letters
held by the Public Archives of Canada in Ottawa: one hundred and three letters by Lampman
and twenty-six letters by Thomson. An editorial writer for the Toronto Globe,
Thomson became an important literary contact for Lampman, and their letters represent
"the only extensive exchange between Lampman and a trusted literary friend which
covers the entire span of Lampman's mature creative life."
Ninety-two of Lampman's letters were previously published by
Arthur S. Bourinot in the volume Archibald Lampman's Letters to Edward William Thomson
(1890-1898) (Ottawa: Bourinot, 1956); however, that edition is hindered by incomplete
texts, errors in transcription, and deficient annotations. The current edition presents
the letters in their entirety, complete with detailed and useful annotations. The letters
appear chronologically and are cross-referenced for added practicality. There is also an
index to people and literary publications, as well as an appendix which contains
reproductions of manuscript pages and some uncollected material related to the letters.
A2 "Style." Edited and introduced by Sue Mothersill. Canadian Poetry:
Studies, Documents, Reviews 7 (Fall-Winter 1980): 56-72.
This is the first publication of "Style," a critical essay which Mothersill
prepared using the manuscript held by the Public Archives of Canada in Ottawa. In her
introduction, Mothersill establishes her desire to produce an accurate and reliable first
text. But this is not what is commonly referred to as a "scholarly publication":
all editorial changes are silent, and the essay appears without editorial symbols and
On the question of style, Lampman states that "In the end it
happens to every powerful and original artist that peculiarity of thought or imagination
which is uppermost in him obtains an absorbing mastery and gives the tone to his
creations, and this tone working itself out through the implements of his art is
A3 "Twenty-Five Fugitive Poems by Archibald Lampman." Edited and introduced
by L.R. Early. Canadian Poetry: Studies, Documents, Reviews 12 (Spring-Summer
This collection offers twenty-five previously published poems which do not appear in
the principal editions of Lampman's poetry. Of the twenty-five poems included, nineteen
were published in periodicals between 1882 and 1898 by Lampman; the remaining six poems
appeared posthumously. Early indicates that of the nineteen poems which were published
during Lampman's lifetime, six are not recorded in any of the major bibliographies.
Furthermore, three poems appeared in Owl, a magazine published at the University of
Ottawa, and Early suggests that these have not been collected or recorded anywhere.
All editorial corrections to spelling and punctuation appear
silently. When the text of the manuscript does not match the published versions of the
poems, the variations have been recorded in the notes which follow the works.
A4 The Story of an Affinity. Edited by D.M.R. Bentley. London, ON: Canadian
Poetry Press, 1986. 85 pp. (See also B20, B25)
Bentley cites numerous similarities between Lampman's life and the life of his
protagonist, Richard Stahlberg, to support his suggestion that the poem is "in some
respects a vicarious autobiography---a fictional, but hardly distanced, treatment of
Lampman's own experiences and preoccupations." Bentley also suggests that "the
marked disparity between the lives of the poet and protagonist after the completion of
their education" is "an element of wish fulfilment" for Lampman. Stahlberg
becomes a successful college lecturer, enjoys a happy marriage, and possesses great
physical prowess; in contrast, Lampman worked at the Post Office in Ottawa, was (in
Bentley's opinion) unhappily married to Maud Playter, and suffered from poor health due to
a childhood bout of rheumatic fever.
Bentley notes that the need for a new edition of The Story of
an Affinity arose from the fact that Duncan Campbell Scott published an incomplete
text of the poem in The Poems of Archibald Lampman (1900), having omitted one
lengthy passage from the first part of the poem and two such passages from the second
part. Scott also took editorial liberties with the spelling and punctuation of the poem,
in some instances altering the meaning of Lampman's text. A record of Scott's emendations
can be found in the very useful appendix which follows the text of the poem. Valuable
explanatory notes to the text are included, and a list of Bentley's editorial emendations
is combined with a record of Lampman's revisions to the manuscript of the poem.
A5 "The Letters of Lampman to Lighthall (1888-1898)." Edited by Michael
Gnarowski and Helen Lynn. Canadian Poetry: Studies, Documents, Reviews 23
(Fall-Winter 1988): 62-80.
A group of eighteen letters written to Lighthall (1857-1954), an editor, novelist,
poet, amateur historian, and philosopher who resided in Montreal during Lampman's
lifetime. "The present correspondence between Lighthall and Lampman appears to have
had its origins in the fact that Lighthall had been given the task of assembling a
collection of poems for an anthology of Canadian verse being planned by the English man of
letters, William Sharp, for his `Canterbury Poets Series'." As Gnarowski and Lynn
point out, the early letters record Lampman's submission of poems to Lighthall for
inclusion in the anthology while the later correspondence reflects some of Lampman's
"comings and goings in that last and most important decade of his life."
The texts of the letters appear without any editorial
intervention, having been transcribed from manuscripts held by McGill University
Libraries. Extensive annotations are included.
A6 Selected Poetry of Archibald Lampman. Edited and Introduced by Michael
Gnarowski. Ottawa: Tecumseh, 1990. 119 pp.
An important new collection of poems taken from the three volumes of verse which
Lampman prepared for publication. Of the thirty seven poems included, seventeen come from Among
the Millet (1888), eight from Lyrics of Earth (1896), and twelve from Alcyone
(1899). The poems are presented as they appear in the original editions; however,
Gnarowski notes that he intervened "on rare occasions" to standardize the
spelling of "certain recurring words." The introduction contains exceptionally
detailed biographical data combined with a more general discussion of the poet as he is
revealed through his work. For more detailed critical writing on Lampman, the reader is
directed to the "Notes and References" section, which includes a select
checklist of the critical work on individual poems. There is also a selected bibliography
which lists the major writing by and relating to Lampman.
A7 "Letters to Carman, 1890-92, from Campbell, Lampman, and Scott." Edited
with an introduction by Tracy Ware. Canadian Poetry: Studies, Documents, Reviews 27
(Fall- Winter 1990): 46-66.
From 1890-1892, Bliss Carman served as literary editor of the Independent, a
religious and literary weekly from New York. During this time, Carman became an important
literary contact for the other Confederation poets: as Ware points out, Carman offered
constant encouragement and constructive criticism while often providing opportunities for
publication (eight of Lampman's poems were published in the Independent during
Of the eleven letters written by Lampman, nine are brief
statements concerning the poetry which Lampman and Carman had exchanged for critical
evaluation. In the two remaining letters, Lampman formulates more detailed critical
examinations of Carman's verse. On the whole, the letters demonstrate Lampman's capacity
for extensive praise of the poetry of others even while he demonstrates his usual
uncertainty and dissatisfaction with his own writing.
B. Works on Archibald Lampman Published in Books and Periodicals.
B1 Mezei, Kathy. "Lampman and Nelligan: Dream Landscapes." Canadian
Review of Comparative Literature 6 (Spring 1979): 151-65.
Mezei explores the similarities between the dream and nightmare landscapes of Lampman
and the Montreal poet Emile Nelligan. Mezei feels that the two poets began using dream
landscapes because they were "exceedingly sensitive to the arrows of reality shot at
them by a harsh world, and sought a form in which to shelter and nurture a delicate
sensibility. Dream landscapes provided, therefore, an objective framework within which the
poet could express his inner state." Mezei also notes that while Nelligan
internalized his landscapes, and often inhabited them, Lampman's dream landscapes were
external visions which "consisted of natural landscapes hazed by dream, or melting
into dream, until they reflected the poet's often ambivalent mood or inner being."
B2 Bentley, D.M.R. "Pan and the Confederation Poets." Canadian Literature
81 (Summer 1979): 59-71. Rpt. in revised form as "Passion for Woods and Wild Life:
Pan and the Poets of the Confederation." The Gay]Grey Moose. Ottawa: Univ. of
Ottawa Press, 1992. 235-250.
Bentley identifies the recurrent use of Pan in the poetry of the Confederation poets
and suggests that Pan was an attractive image because he carries with him many of the
characteristics of the poets themselves: "the dualistic Pan is a type of the pastoral
poet who, because he is in tune with and even a part of nature, is an outsider in the
cacophonous world of the city."
In dealing with Lampman's treatment of Pan, Bentley examines
three poems: "The Song of Pan," "The Poets," and "Favorites of
Pan." While discussing "The Poets," Bentley finds that "the primary
characteristic of Pan---the fact of his being part animal and part god (or man)---made him
for Lampman the perfect image of the dualistic nature of man, and, concomitantly, of the
poet, whose task it is to encourage a yearning for the divine and, by doing so, to assist
mankind in its movement up the evolutionary ladder."
Bentley explores Lampman's affiliation with Pan at greater length
in his discussion of "Favorites of Pan," which he refers to as Lampman's
"most important treatment of the goat-god". In it, Pan's music causes the type
of dream vision which "usually derives from Nature itself in Lampman's poetry."
The close similarity between Pan and Nature is amplified when Lampman's Pan enchants the
frogs with his music. Bentley suggests that "By giving imaginative credence to the
perception that Pan's music can be heard in the `murmur' of frogs Lampman, in effect,
gives a mythological dimension to Canadian nature."
B3 Matthews, John P. "Duncan Campbell Scott and `The Moment of Becoming'." In
The Duncan Campbell Scott Symposium. Edited with an introduction by K. P. Stich.
Ottawa: Univ. of Ottawa Press, 1980. 1-10.
In a brief reference to Lampman's literary relationship with Scott, Matthews attempts
to identify Lampman's influence on Scott's writing. "There is one basic practice
which Lampman arrived at only after anguished experiment and tension, and which is as
natural and unforced in Scott as breathing. The re-interpretation of Canadian nature as an
emblem for Canadian society grew out of Lampman's inability to accept in this country the
wise passiveness which he claimed was his goal, but which was always disturbed by
thought." Lampman's "instinctive perception of the implications of his own use
of unchanging imagery to connote things in a state of change" is identified as
"perhaps the most important legacy" which Lampman left for Scott.
B4 Wicken, George. "Archibald Lampman: An Annotated Bibliography." In The
Annotated Bibliography of Canada's Major Authors. Edited by Robert Lecker and Jack
David. vol. 2. Downsview, ON: ECW, 1980, 97-146.
The first attempt at a comprehensive bibliography on Lampman, this indispensable work
covers work on and by Lampman dating to 1980. Wicken includes sections which cover the
following: books of Lampman's poetry and prose; the location of manuscripts; first and
subsequent publication information for all of Lampman's writing; all critical work on
Lampman, including books, articles and sections of books, theses and dissertations,
miscellaneous materials, and publications honouring Lampman; and selected book reviews.
B5 Arnold, Richard. "`The Clearer Self': Lampman's Transcendental-Visionary
Development." Canadian Poetry: Studies, Documents, Reviews 8 (Spring-Summer
1981): 33-55. (See also B15)
Arnold suggests that Lampman attempted to embrace Emersonian Transcendentalism before
abandoning it for a more realistic and honest view of life and nature. In Among the
Millet (1888), "Lampman desires the Emersonian unity with the universe but cannot
allow himself to have it. `Conscious stress' plagues him throughout the volume: he wants
to experience the `elemental joy' and be part of the `eternal movement of life', but he
sees nature in a more complex light than did Emerson. As the title of the volume suggests,
he is among nature---but never united with it."
With Lyrics of Earth (1896), Lampman is able to suppress
his "ambivalent feelings" toward nature in an attempt to embrace Emerson's
philosophical position. Many of these poems, "seem to be Transcendental
experiences"; however, Lampman "never actually yields himself to nature;
he never becomes united with nature. He yields himself to, and becomes united with
a dream of nature."
In the end, Lampman rejects his dreamland embrace of Emersonian
Transcendentalism in favour of a complex realism which he explores through the poems in Alcyone
(1899). In this book, the "futility and dishonesty" of Lyrics of Earth is
replaced by honest and uninhibited visions of apocalypse, suffering, and decay. Arnold
seems to suggest that Lampman realized his own comprehensive philosophical position on the
relationship of man to his environment through his experiment with Emerson's view.
B6 Clever, W. Glenn. "Lampman's `Comfort of the Fields'." Journal of
Canadian Poetry 3.2 (Winter 1981): 55-62.
A close examination of Lampman's poem which appeared in Lyrics of Earth (1896).
Clever analyses various aspects of the work, including structure, point of view, diction,
imagery, and rhythm in making his assessment of it. "The poem . . . is a restatement
of a typical Lampman position---a celebration of Nature in its benign mood, with comment
on its power to impact on men; but its lack of intellectual or spiritual content makes its
appeal basically emotional---it suggests a cult of nature for nature's sake."
B7 Bentley, D.M.R. "Watchful Dreams and Sweet Unrest: An Essay on the Vision of
Archibald Lampman." Studies in Canadian Literature [pt. 1] 6.1 (1981):
188-210; [pt. 2] 7.1 (1982): 5-26. (See also B8)
Bentley suggests that Lampman's "best and most central poems obtain much of their
energy and detail from a coherent cosmology or `world view' . . . a series of concentric
circles . . . [which] divide readily into quadrants." In simplified terms, the
quadrants are: morning/Spring, noon/Summer, afternoon/Fall, and midnight/Winter. While
Bentley goes on to examine each quadrant and the poetry which corresponds to it, he places
special emphasis on the noon/Summer and midnight/Winter quadrants. Noon/Summer is
"the first, and most important quadrant. . . . It is the quadrant in which positive
visionary experiences---epiphanic insights in to [sic] man, nature, and human life---are
most likely to occur because, to Lampman, sunlight is poetentially [sic] and
metaphorically the source of both physical and spiritual illumination."
The midnight/Winter quadrant ranks as second most important for
Lampman. It "tends to associate itself in Lampman's poetry with diagnostic,
futuristic and apocalyptic visions that confront the world with its condition of
entrapment and, by implication, suggest that illusions are untenable and changes
B8 Bentley, D.M.R. "A Thread of Memory and the Fabric of Archibald Lampman's `City
of the End of Things'." World Literature Written in English 21.1 (Spring
1982): 86-95. (See Also B7)
Bentley suggests that "The City of the End of Things" may have been
influenced by books eight and nine of Wordsworth's The Excursion. However, Bentley
admits that while Lampman's essays reveal his familiarity with Wordsworth, it cannot be
proven that Lampman knew The Excursion.
Bentley bases his appraisal of the poem as an
"individual" and "original" work "on the fact that it partakes of
a cosmology which Lampman made uniquely his own." For a detailed discussion of
Lampman's cosmology, the reader is directed to Bentley's "Watchful Dreams and Sweet
Unrest: An Essay on the Vision of Archibald Lampman" (B7).
B9 Early, L.R. "Archibald Lampman (1861-1899)." In Canadian Writers and
Their Works. Edited by Robert Lecker, Jack David, and Ellen Quigley. vol. 2, Poetry
Series. Downsview, ON: ECW, 1983. 135-185. Rpt. in unpaginated and undated form as Archibald
Lampman and His Works. (See also B18)
A good general overview of Lampman's life and career, as well as a summation of much of
the critical writing on Lampman from 1888 to 1980. The reader should note that parts of
the text were reprinted in 1986 in Early's book-length study Archibald Lampman
(B18). Those looking for a more detailed exposition of many of the ideas presented in the
current text should consult the later publication.
B10 MacGillivray, S.R. and J.D. Rabb. "Three Lampman Letters." Canadian
Literature 97 (Summer 1983): 175-177.
MacGillivray and Rabb record the discovery of three letters sent by the Reverend
Archibald Lampman to Joseph McNeely. The letters were donated to the Chancellor Norman M.
Paterson Library, Lakehead University by a direct descendent of McNeely, a farmer whose
"brother John had married the poet's aunt."
The letters, dated September 18, 1886; September 23, 1886; and
September 12, 1888, contain the Reverend's replies to McNeely's request for assistance in
ascertaining the value of certain rock formations on his land.
B11 Early, L.R. "Lampman's Love Poetry." Essays on Canadian Writing 27
(Winter 1983- 84): 116-149. (See also B18)
Early suggests that "like most love poets in the great tradition, he [Lampman]
believed in the vital importance of sexual love as the unifying expression of the carnal
and spiritual elements in human nature." Particular attention is paid to The Story
of an Affinity and its connection to Lampman's relationship with Katherine Waddell.
While Lampman was "bound by vows to Maud [his wife], he felt his true affinity to be
with Katherine, and his `story' is probably to some extent self-justification." Early
does not believe that Lampman and Waddell were "carnal lovers," but he states
that "the impact on Lampman's poetry of his relationship with Katherine Waddell can
hardly be overestimated." The relationship of Lampman's biography to his poetry is
undeniable: "in The Story of an Affinity, he staked his imaginative integrity
on the idea of romantic love, and a romantic debacle in his own life checked---or helped
to check---his imaginative development." The article is reprinted with minor
modifications in Early's book-length study Archibald Lampman (B18).
B12 Adams, John Coldwell. "Roberts, Lampman, and Edmund Collins." In The
Sir Charles G. D. Roberts Symposium. Eds. Glenn Clever and David Staines. Ottawa:
Univ. of Ottawa Press, 1984. 5-13.
While the essay deals primarily with Charles G.D. Roberts' relationship with Collins,
Adams also discusses how Lampman came to know Collins, and through him, Roberts. The essay
does not explore the relationship in detail, but Adams does propose that Collins was an
important literary influence on Lampman. Additionally, and perhaps most importantly, Adams
suggests that Collins may have been responsible for exposing Lampman to Roberts' Orion
and Other Poems, a collection which encouraged Lampman greatly.
B13 Early, L.R. "A Chronology of Lampman's Poems." Canadian Poetry:
Studies, Documents, Reviews 14 (Spring-Summer 1984): 75-87.
An important work which attempts to provide accurate dates of composition for Lampman's
353 published poems. Each of the poems listed appears in one or more of the following
collections: The Poems of Archibald Lampman (1900), At the Long Sault
(1943), Lampman's Kate: Late Love Poems of Archibald Lampman (1975), Lampman's
Sonnets 1884-1899 (1976), and "Twenty-Five Fugitive Poems by Archibald
Lampman" (See A3). Early lists the title of each poem, followed by the supposed date
of the poem, and "the most accessible place of publication, with page number."
Furthermore, Early indicates which poems were published in the three volumes prepared by
Lampman: Among the Millet (1888), Lyrics of Earth (1896), and Alcyone
(1899). This information is cross-referenced with the appearance of the poems in The
Poems of Archibald Lampman. Explanatory notes are included in "several especially
complex or unusual cases."
B14 McLeod, Les. "Canadian Post-Romanticism: the Context of Late
Nineteenth-Century Canadian Poetry." Canadian Poetry: Studies, Documents, Reviews
14 (Spring-Summer 1984): 1-37.
McLeod notes that three terms have often been used to describe English-Canadian poetry
written in the late nineteenth century: Romantic, Victorian, and Confederation. Having
judged each of these titles to be unsatisfactory, McLeod admits that Romantic is the most
accurate term by virtue of its emphasis on nature and the individual.
In this context, McLeod examines the poetry of Lampman and his
contemporaries. Lampman's "April" is examined in detail as a
"quintessentially Post-Romantic poem" which relates "how the persona gains
a sense of identity in nature, not by becoming mystically integrated with it [as the
Romantics did], but by discovering there his separate self."
The irony of Post-Romanticism is explored further with an
examination of "In November," a poem which demonstrates the move away from the
perfect Romantic union with nature. In it, the persona's "identity is at its lowest
ebb. And yet he does feel a pleasure and so does the reader. . . . " The poet
"has expressed them [the persona's feelings] in such a way that the reader may
confront the meaning of November, and may come to understand the fact of man's solitude in
nature. This confrontation, Lampman dramatizes over and over."
McLeod also discusses "Heat," in which the persona is
removed from the action of the poem, isolated from the landscape: " . . . at rest in
the centre of this apocalypse, the persona retains his separate consciousness. . . .
Nowhere does he report an experience of unity with the landscape, and loss of self.
Neither does he report particular thoughts. Rather it is the consciousness itself which
becomes isolate and clear."
B15 Arnold, Richard. "`Thoughts Grow Keen and Clear': A Look at Lampman's
Revisions." Studies in Canadian Literature 10.1-2 (1985): 170-176. (See also
An essay which examines further the thesis developed in Arnold's "`The Clearer
Self': Lampman's Transcendental-Visionary Development" (B5). In the current paper,
Arnold examines early workbook manuscript versions of two poems in an attempt to
illustrate Lampman's movement away from Emersonian Transcendentalism. "Vision,"
a poem originally published in 1892, suggests that Lampman embraced Emerson's position,
but it also appears in Lyrics of Earth (1896) as "Winter-Store," a
revised version which indicates that Lampman "was becoming impatient with the
"Peccavi, Domine," published in Alcyone (1899),
contains significant revisions as well. As it appears in the workbook, the poem is
supportive of Emerson's Transcendentalism; in Alcyone, it suggests that "The
Oversoul or All, if it even exists, has become for Lampman unknowable and uncertain."
B16 Doyle, James. "Archibald Lampman and Hamlin Garland." Canadian Poetry:
Studies, Documents, Reviews 16 (Spring-Summer 1985): 38-46.
An examination of the relationship between Lampman and Garland, an American fiction
writer. The friendship lasted ten years, beginning in 1889, presumably when Garland
encountered Among the Millet (1888). After reading Lampman's first published book
of poetry, Garland apparently sent Lampman what Doyle refers to as a "fan
letter," thus initiating the correspondence which seems to have continued until
shortly before Lampman's death.
Doyle's discussion of the friendship covers the writers'
discourse on literature and politics, and Garland's attempts to further Lampman's career
in the United States. "The story of the relationship between these two authors,
besides having considerable biographical interest, provides suggestive insights into the
contrasts, parallels, and interaction between the Canadian and American literary milieux
of the 1890s."
B17 Doyle, James. "The Confederation Poets and American Publishers." Canadian
Poetry: Studies, Documents, Reviews 17 (Fall-Winter 1985): 59-67.
Doyle notes that while Lampman succeeded in having a number of his poems published in
prominent American magazines, he, along with the other Confederation poets, struggled to
have his work published in book form. Doyle attempts to elucidate the difficulties by
suggesting that "the larger firms were either too cautious or too negligent in their
attitudes toward work by unestablished authors; if the smaller companies showed more
enthusiasm, they often turned out to be economically unstable, or simply incapable of
promoting works on a scale likely to satisfy an ambitious author."
With regard to Lampman, particular attention is paid to the Lyrics
of Earth manuscript, which faced repeated rejection by publishers. In the end, the
volume was published only when Lampman's friend E.W. Thomson "intervened with
Copeland and Day, who agreed to bring out Lyrics of Earth, but in a shortened
version, which neither pleased the author nor reached a substantial audience. Even Thomson
added to Lampman's dissatisfaction by editing the manuscript and omitting poems that
Lampman considered essential."
B18 Early, L.R. Archibald Lampman. Boston: Twayne Publishers, 1986. 175 pp. (See
also B9, B11)
The first contemporary book-length study of Lampman and his writing. Early begins by
offering a detailed and useful biography of the poet in chapter one, followed by a
sensitive discussion of the influence of Romantic poetry on Lampman in chapter two. For
Early, some of Lampman's poems are clearly derivative of the Romantic school, but many
"are traditional in the best and most fruitful sense of the word." Chapters
three and four deal with the nature poetry, in which Early traces what he refers to as
Lampman's "essentially Romantic pattern of development. He gradually moved from an
almost obsessive interest in landscape to a greater concern with ethical and social
In Early's view, Lampman came to see the "limitations of his
central mode of poetry, the Romantic nature lyric. He became dissatisfied with the genre
as he came to realize that the imagination is a human, not a natural phenomenon, and a
mixed blessing with a darker side than his landscape poetry could express." At this
point, Lampman turned to the writing of "social" poems focusing on the city
(examined in chapter five), and love (discussed in chapter six). Chapter seven briefly
covers the poems Lampman wrote during the last few years of his life. With chapter eight,
Early concludes by making an assessment of Lampman's achievement as seen from a modern
perspective. The reader should note that parts of chapters two and eight originally
appeared in "Archibald Lampman (1861-1899)" (See B9). Chapter six was originally
published as "Lampman's Love Poetry" (See B11).
B19 Precosky, Don. "Seven Myths About Canadian Literature." Studies in
Canadian Literature 11 (Spring 1986): 86-95.
In the sixth of the seven myths, Precosky attempts to dispel the critical opinion that
Lampman is the "best Confederation poet." Citing the emphasis upon Lampman's
biography as the chief reason for the "misconception," Precosky submits that
Lampman "must be judged on what he produced and not on the pathos of his life."
Lampman "wrote about a limited number of scenes from nature in a limited number of
forms. . . . A few of his sonnets and (perhaps) a half dozen other poems (`Heat' comes to
mind) are very good. His attempts at political comment (`The City of the End of Things'
and `The Land of Pallas') are not."
B20 Bentley, D.M.R. "Large Stature and Larger Soul: Notes on the Herculean Hero
and Narrative in Canadian Literature." Journal of Canadian Poetry (1987):
1-21. Rpt. in revised form as "Large Stature and Larger Soul: The Herculean Hero and
Narrative in Canadian Literature." The Gay]Grey Moose. Ottawa: Univ. of Ottawa
Press, 1992. 217- 233. (See also A4, B25)
In the section of the essay devoted to Lampman, Bentley argues that
"Happiness" and The Story of an Affinity may have evolved out of
Lampman's familiarity with "The Story of Hercules" as it was told by Xenophon in
the Memorabilia Socratis, retold in the Earl of Shaftsbury's Characteristics,
and recorded in John Lemprière's classical dictionary Bibliotheca Classica. In the
original tale, Hercules must choose between heroic virtue, which leads to struggle
followed by happiness; and hedonistic pleasure, which leads directly and immediately to
happiness. In "Happiness," Lampman tells a similar story in which he seems to
suggest that those "who are gifted by nature with a delicate balance between egoism
and altruism" will be most happy. Bentley points out that "although Lampman
makes no explicit reference to Hercules anywhere in the `Happiness' essay, it is plausible
to speculate that here, as in The Story of an Affinity, he had Hercules in mind as
an instance of the ideal being in whom there is a `rare and fitting harmony' of personal
and public motives. . . . It is a characteristic of Herculean narratives in Canada that
they take their heroes towards a happiness contingent on just such a harmony between self
and other, individual and society."
B21 Rudzik, Orest H.T. "Literary Norms and Translation." Canadian
Literature Supp. 1 (1987): 23-37.
A broad yet precise paper delivered at the 1984 Ottawa Conference on Language, Culture
and Literary Identity in Canada. In the portion of the article devoted to Lampman, Rudzik
offers an interesting reading of "At the Long Sault," discussing it in light of
the cultural and literary diversity which must have acted upon Lampman as he wrote the
poem. Because Canada is a culturally complex environment, Canadian writers may be
confronted by "too much variety of choice, too many literary ideals, to try to
accommodate." This is illustrated by "At the Long Sault": the conventional
use of myth and epic are mixed with what Rudzik calls Lampman's "Darwinian
landscape" in which "The defender of New France is compared to a bull moose
brought down by a ravening pack of hungry wolves hunting in winter."
B22 Thomson, E.W. "E.W. Thomson's Review of Among the Millet." Introduced by
Eric Ball. Canadian Poetry: Studies, Documents, Reviews 20 (Spring-Summer 1987):
A reprint of Thomson's favourable review of Among the Millet (1888) which was
first published in the Toronto Globe on August 10, 1889. In his introduction, Ball
notes that although the review "is not signed, it is clearly that which Thomson, who
served as editorial writer for the Globe from 1879 until 1891, later claimed to
have written and published in that paper in the summer of 1889." Ball notes that it
appears unlikely Thomson was "motivated" to write a strong review by the
favourable and very influential review contained in William Dean Howells' "Editor's
Study," published in Harper's in April 1889. Thomson does not appear to have
been aware of Howells' work when he wrote his review; later, he continued to believe that
he was the first to review Lampman's book, having been misinformed about the publication
date of Howell's commentary.
The review suggests that "the qualities which make Mr.
Lampman not only greatest among Canadian poets, but one whom any nation might be proud to
own, are, first of all, sincerity; next, the ability to see infinitude in common things,
and then a noble ability to convey his impressions melodiously, clearly and
B23 Ower, John. "The Story of an Affinity: Lampman's `The Frogs' and Tennyson's
`The Lotos-Eaters'." Canadian Literature 115 (Winter 1987): 285-289.
A careful, detailed comparison of "The Frogs," published in Among the
Millet (1888), and Tennyson's "The Lotos Eaters." Ower states that Lampman
was not "a servile imitator" of Tennyson: he may have appropriated certain
aspects of Tennyson's poem, but "The Frogs" cannot be dismissed as simply
derivative. Ower argues that Lampman succeeds in using Tennyson to help create a work
which is very much Canadian: "Lampman . . . suggests a nationalistic literary
consciousness in `The Frogs' by translating his expression of interests shared with
Tennyson from a Classical and Mediterranean to a Canadian setting. Through these tactics,
Lampman was able in `The Frogs' to use the Laureate as a `resource' while maintaining his
independence as an `individual talent' and a Canadian writer."
B24 Wayne, Joyce. "Shouting Love: Milton Acorn Remembered." This Magazine
22.6 (Dec. 1988): 12-18.
In what appears to be a memorial to Acorn, Wayne spends an inordinate amount of time
focused on Lampman, exploring his biography in order to draw parallels between his life
and Acorn's. Wayne portrays Lampman as a wayward, rebellious man who became "an
ardent socialist while managing to make himself socially disreputable among Ottawa's high
society." She also states that Lampman "impetuously" married Maud Playter,
and that "Maud expected a proper home with a proper husband and a proper social
circle; [however,] Lampman was unable or unwilling to deliver." Later, Wayne states
unequivocally that "Lampman fell madly in love with Kate Waddell" and "for
some months, he lived with Waddell in rooms on Sparks Street."
Wayne describes Lampman as a poet who was, like Acorn,
"central to an emerging Canadian culture," even though neither poet had much
success in trying to have their work published in book form. In Wayne's opinion, "the
Canadian establishment found a way to cut them both. If Ottawa society ignored Lampman for
his waywardness, Toronto society lambasted Acorn for his flagrant disregard for
B25 Bentley, D.M.R. "Sizing Up the Women in `Malcolm's Katie' and `The Story of an
Affinity'." Studies in Canadian Literature 14.2 (1989): 48-62. (See also A4,
The poems are discussed in light of the current emphasis on feminism in literary
criticism. Bentley notes that the works "treat of such feminist issues as female
education and independence, issues that were undergoing gradual but evident changes at the
time, nowhere more quickly and apparently than in the metropolitan centres in which
[Isabella Valancy] Crawford and Lampman lived and wrote."
Lampman himself is recognized as a man who spoke out in favour of
women's rights; however, Bentley suggests that while The Story of an Affinity
contains a strong, independent woman in the character of Charlotte Ambray, "when it
focuses on Margaret [Hawthorne] rather than Charlotte, [it is] much less the vigorous
contestation of female inequality and restriction than it originally seemed. . . .
Lampman's poem . . . is still centrally a man's poem about the education of a man. . . .
B26 Archer, Anne. "The Story of an Affinity: D. G. Jones, Archibald Lampman, and
`Kate These Flowers'." Canadian Literature 122-123 (Autumn-Winter 1989):
An examination of Jones' "Kate These Flowers," a series of short lyrics in
which "Archibald Lampman and his mistress, Katherine Waddell, appear as two moderate
Anglicans trying to preserve their passion in a land part `arctic,' part
`temperate'---'this country where / desire becomes restraint'." Lampman's own writing
is identified as the source for Jones' work: "A Portrait in Six Sonnets," (which
Lampman presented to Katherine); Lampman's Kate, Late Love Poems of Archibald
Lampman 1887-1897 (Whitridge 1975); and The Story of an Affinity are works
which Archer suggests "trace his [Lampman's] relationship or `friendship' with his
fellow civil servant." Archer proposes that the relationship was, in fact, rooted in
"one-sided passion" on the part of Lampman, a position supported by her claim
that The Story of an Affinity portrays the relationship Lampman wished he could
have had with Waddell.
In Archer's view, Jones becomes "Lampman's double" in
order to "explore the enigma of Lampman and Kate. . . . " The result is a
modernized rewriting of Lampman's relationship with Katherine in which "Jones has
clearly assimilated Lampman; fascinated by Lampman's portrait of poet and beloved spirits,
Jones extrapolates on the sexual potential of this bond."
B27 Ball, Eric. "Life `Only Sweet': The Significance of the Sequence in Lampman's Lyrics
of Earth." Canadian Poetry: Studies, Documents, Reviews [pt. 1] 25
(Fall-Winter 1989): 1-20; [pt. 2] 26 (Spring-Summer 1990): 19-42.
In this detailed essay, Ball suggests that the significance of the sequence in Lyrics
of Earth (1896) is quite simple: Lampman used the cycle of the seasons to illustrate
his belief that nature is always "entirely beautiful, the embodiment of unsullied
perfection." Regardless of season, and no matter how harsh or bleak the landscape,
"there exists in nature a beauty capable of inspiring in the sensitive observer a
profound appreciation and involvement." It is this "involvement" which
manifests itself in Lampman's poetry as the "dream" vision.
Ball argues that Lampman invites us to participate in his visions
so that we might experience what he does. Through the "actual evocations of
particular scenes, . . . we are, as readers, moved. . . . To see the poet alert and
observant `in' and `among' the various manifestations he depicts . . . and to see what he
sees, is to share and so, directly, be convinced. Lyrics of Earth offers numerous
occasions for such direct involvement."
Index to Critics
Adams, John Coldwell B12
McLeod, Les B14
Archer, Anne B26
Mezei, Kathy B1
Arnold, Richard B5, B15
Mothersill, Sue A2
Ball, Eric B22, B27
Ower, John B23
Bentley, D.M.R. A4, B2, B7, B8, B20, B25
Precosky, Don B19
Clever, W. Glenn B6
Rabb, J.D. B10
Doyle, James B16, B17
Rudzik, Orest H.T. B21
Early, L.R. A3, B9, B11, B13, B18
Thomson, E.W. B22
Gnarowski, Michael A5, A6
Ware, Tracy A7
Lynn, Helen A1, A5
Wayne, Joyce B24
MacGillivray, S.R. B10
Wicken, George B4
Matthews, John P. B3