matt's poetry pocketbook:
poems and poets notes

If I should die, be not concerned to know, Philip Bainbrigge

Comment on "If I should die" by Philip Bainbrigge

The poem is in Martin Taylor's Lads, this book subtitled Love Poetry of the Trenches, paperback edition published by Gerald Duckworth and Co, 61 Frith St, London W1V 5TA, 1998 ISBN 0 7156 2879 8, originally published in hardback 1989 by Constable and Co. The poem appears in the 1998 Duckworth edition on p.69. (Recently re-issue in paperback. - I got my copy from the second hand bookstall under Waterloo Bridge.)

The book has a biography for each of the poets featured, for Bainbrigge it reads:

Philip Gillespie Bainbrigge (1891-1918)
Born in London, and educated at Eton and Trinity College, Cambridge. Master at Shrewsbury School September 1913-March 1917. After training with Inns of Court OTC from May 1917, commissioned in November 1917 as a 2nd Lieutenant in 4th Battalion, Lancashire Fusiliers, although served with 15th Battalion, Welsh Regiment in France from February 1918. Killed in action at Battle of Epèhy on 18 September 1918. His one war poem, a scurrilous response to Brooke, appeared in Slide Rule (1954), the autobiography of Nevil Shute, former pupil. His witty Uranian play Achilles in Scyros is quoted in Love in Earnest. Wilfred Owen met Bainbrigge at Scarborough in February 1918 and thought well enough of him to slate him for copy of his projected Poems. (Lads, Duckworth 1998, p 229).

Matthew John Williams
July 2003