Tuesday, 23 April 2013

Rupert Brooke (1887 – 1915)

The poet Rupert Brooke died 98 years ago today. I took this photograph back in 2009 when I visited the grave in an olive grove near Tris Boukes Bay on the Greek Island of Skyros. Brooke died of septicemia from an infected mosquito bite aboard a French hospital ship en route to the landings at Gallipoli. The site was chosen by his close friend, William Denis Browne - killed in action at Gallipoli a few weeks later - who wrote of Brooke's death:

"...I sat with Rupert. At 4 o’clock he became weaker, and at 4.46 he died, with the sun shining all round his cabin, and the cool sea-breeze blowing through the door and the shaded windows. No one could have wished for a quieter or a calmer end than in that lovely bay, shielded by the mountains and fragrant with sage and thyme."