Wilfrid Wilson Gibson

(1878 - 1962 / England)

Biography of Wilfrid Wilson Gibson

Wilfrid Wilson Gibson poet

Wilfred Wilson Gibson (1878-1962), a close friend of Rupert Brooke and a protégé of Edward Marsh, was born in Hexham, England in 1878.

Gibson worked for a time as a social worker in London's East End. He published his first verse in 1902, Mountain Lovers. He had several poems included in various Georgian poetry collections prior to the war. He also wrote a play, Daily Bread, which was produced in 1910.

After the outbreak of war, Gibson served as a private in the infantry on the Western Front. It was therefore from the perspective of the ordinary soldier that Gibson wrote his war poetry.

His active service was brief, but his poetry belies his lack of experience, Breakfast being a prime example of ironic war verse written during the very early stages of the conflict.


Following the armistice, Gibson continued writing poetry and plays. His work was particularly concerned with the poverty of industrial workers and village labourers. Collected Poems: 1905-1925 was published in 1926, The Island Stag in 1927, and Within Four Walls in 1950.

Wilfred Wilson Gibson died in 1962.

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PoemHunter.com Updates

The Dancing Seal

When we were building Skua Light--
The first men who had lived a night
Upon that deep-sea Isle--
As soon as chisel touched the stone,
The friendly seals would come ashore;
And sit and watch us all the while,
As though they'd not seen men before;
And so, poor beasts, had never known
Men had the heart to do them harm.

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