Tuesday, 3 January 2012

Miss Lily Elsie

Lily Elsie was an actress who became one of the biggest stars of Edwardian musical theatre. She was born on 8th April 1886 in Leeds, Yorkshire. In 1896/7, she played Princess Mirza in 'The Arabian Nights' at the Queen's Theatre, Manchester.  Then for Christmas 1896, at the age of ten, she played the title role of 'Little Red Riding Hood' for six weeks followed by six weeks touring.

Her most famous role was in 'The Merry Widow' in 1906. She became an overnight sensation, even though she was painfully shy off stage. She married Ian Bullough in 1911, and died on 16th December 1962, aged 76. Full biography here.

Cecil Beaton said about Lily Elsie: "To see her merely walk across the stage was a poem."

This is something I wrote a while ago, and on re-reading it I thought it suited Miss Lily Elsie perfectly. I'm not a master poet at all, but seeing as this is (mostly) a creative writing blog, thought I could put it in. Critiques and comments are welcome.

I am what they dream me to be.
A genie, a shimmer
Beauty, a glimmer
Following limitless imagination.
The expectations tug
Pulling, twisting
Through the fog of fantasy
Chasing me through the depths
to the debt
of transformation.

And then
The eyes have it
Seductions of dark glamour
Take the pit
Into damnation – or
Which is more romantic? – your choice.

She’s smashed it.
The audience susurrate
Hypnotised by her gait; she has lit
The theatre
I can hear the sirens.

1 comment:

  1. Your blog is so lovely! Beautiful poem, beautfiful you and of course beautiful Miss Lily Elsie. She is a big style icon of mine. Very happy you found my blog so that I could find you. xx


Creative writing critiques and general comments always welcome :)