In the week that we celebrated the 162nd anniversary of the publication of Darwin’s On The Origin of Species, Eustacia travelled to London with Mr Fraser-Andrews, Head of Creative Writing, to attend a prize-giving party to celebrate her being crowned a winner of the prestigious Keats-Shelley Memorial Association’s 2021 Young Romantics Poetry and Essay prize.
The party was held in the Georgian townhouse in London’s Albemarle Street where the ground-breaking work was first published.
Sports and nature writer Simon Barnes [pictured], chairman of the judges heaped praise on Eustacia’s winning poem ‘The Craftsman’s Tale’ in the Young Romantics Prize for its imagery and freshness.
Eustacia is the first Salopian to win the prestigious prize that was instituted by the Keats-Shelley Memorial Association. Her poem – which can be read here - will be published later this year alongside work by leading poets and critics in the respected Keats-Shelley Review, as well as receiving a prize for her winning.
John Murray also published Byron, the rakish Romantic poet – “mad bad and dangerous to know” – but whose excoriating writings have been un-putdownable ever since.
Byron’s portrait takes pride of place over photographs of an old and young Darwin on the mantelpiece of the fireplace [pictured] where Murray infamously consigned Byron’s self-penned memoirs to the flames. A gesture of gentlemanly loyalty to spare blushes, perhaps, but also an act of pyrotechnic, literary vandalism to be regretted by scholars ever since.