1960s

My Father's Shelley; a Tale of Two Shelleys

My Father's Shelley; a Tale of Two Shelleys

My father’s Shelley, as I VERY quickly discovered, was very different from mine. He loved the lyric poet.  He loved the Victorian version. He loved Mary’s sanitized version.  In a weird way he bought into Mathew Arnold's caricature of Shelley (“a beautiful and ineffectual angel, beating his wings in a luminous void in vain.”) – and loved him the more for it.  He hated the idea that Shelley was a revolutionary.