Reprint: Victor Daley

The late Mr. Victor Daley has suffered many things at the hands of his professed admirers. The world has been told by now one and now another of his intímate friends how he dodged bailiffs here and absorbed much liquid refreshment there. Well, the world is not much interested in such revelations, true or false. It declines to associate pootry with beer, and it has a regard for the poet Daley, not for the companion of thirsty souls. We should be glad to hear something more solid about Victor Daley than is to be found in the enthusiastic vapourings of his boon companions, actual or alleged - boon companions who in their thoughtlessness have done harm to the man's memory. Indeed, Daley might complain of those who had done his fame much wrong, drowned his credit in a shallow cup, and sold his reputation for a song. This something may be found in "Victor Daley: A Biographical and Critical Notice," by A. G. Stephens (The "Bulletin" Newspaper Co.). There is no guidance herein as to the place which Victor Daley will or should occupy in the world of poets. Indeed, the time has not come when the place of Victor Daley may be apportioned amongst the minor bards who scintillate in Australia to the applause of their fellows. Certainly it will be amongst the minor bards, even though his latest biographer declares that his verses represent what he calls "a substantial poetical performance." "In essential poetry," continues Mr. Stephens, "in Australian character, and in some of the components of technical quality he has been surpassed often; yet no other in this country has written so agreeably during so long a period."

First published in The Sydney Morning Herald, 31 March 1906

[Thanks to the National Library of Australia's newspaper digitisation project for this piece.]

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on January 27, 2010 8:31 AM.

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