Sunday, 23 December 2018

Henry Smalley Sarson (1890 - 1967) – British poet

Henry Smalley Sarson was born in London on 16th August 1890.  His parents were Henry Logsdail Sarson, a Vinegar Distiller of the famous Sarsons Vinegar family, and his wife Maria Henrey Sarson, nee Smalley, who was from Darwen in Lancashire.   In 1891 the Sarson family lived in Islington, London.

Henry went to live in Canada and was working as a farmer when war broke out in 1914.  He joined the Army in September 1914 and served in the Canadian Expeditionary Froce.  He was wounded in 1916, while serving with the Canadian Field Ambulance.  In 1918, Henry married Geraldine L. Edmonds and they had one son – James, who was born in 1926. During the Second World War they lived in Cirencester, UK. Henry died in Surrey in 1967.

Henry’s WW1 collection “From Field and Hospital” was published in 1916.

“The Armed Liner”

The dull gray paint of war
Covering the shining brass and gleaming decks
That once re-echoed to the steps of youth.
That was before
The storms of destiny made ghastly wrecks
Of Peace, the Right and Truth.
Impromptu dances, colored lights and laughter,
Lovers watching the phosphorescent waves,
Now gaping guns, a whistling shell; and after
So many wandering graves.

H. Smalley Sarson

See also “Two Fine Ladies” written in Hyde Park in 1916 from “We Wasn't Pals: Canadian Poetry and Prose of the First World War, Part 4