By Brian Trehearne
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Extra info for Aestheticism and the Canadian Modernists: Aspects of a Poetic Influence
Now it stands bereft, Like crown of jewels, or rose-bush of its bloom. Thy dwelling is as empty as a tomb, As cold and as forlorn when thou art gone. , 62) The atmosphere is created and enforced by the autumnal allusions and by the hint of death at the end. The fascination and pain of a beauty that has passed mingle with the suffering of the defeated lover, and Ross's sonnet is infused with the vision of the Decadence, although perhaps less evocative of melancholy than many of its precursors. Compare Ross's poem with Dowson's "The Garden of Shadow": Love heeds no more the sighing of the wind Against the perfect flowers: thy garden's close Is grown a wilderness, where none shall find One strayed, last petal of one last year's rose.
17 To his credit, Ross's sonnet lacks the indulgent whisperiness of the Decadent lines, but his outcry in "The Same - 2" recalls directly the sentiments of Dowson and Symons. Ross sees his beloved's "desolate dwelling," her rose bushes and tree unattended, the hardness of her floor of "empty stones," and adds the suggestion of death to enforce his Decadent bitterness; all this is made evident in a catalogue of potent images, each of which is intended to add to a cumulative sense of loss, failure, and suffering.
At the breaking point, a new destiny for the arts must be developed: "the appearance of 2O Aestheticism and the Canadian Modernists Art Nouveau upon the scene was a sign that the pressure which the Stylist was seeking strategies to achieve had very nearly reached the necessary degree ... When the pressure was enough, the lid blew off, and the modern styles emerged, not in an embryonic form, or only briefly, but almost at once in maturity" (224-5). " Peckham resolves in these terms the central tension underlying the history of Modernism.
Aestheticism and the Canadian Modernists: Aspects of a Poetic Influence by Brian Trehearne