Autograph manuscript of his First World War poem 'Memory', dated by Sassoon 'February: 1918', 15 lines, one page, small octavo, laid paper, cut from a larger leaf, 1918
...My heart is heavy-laden now: I sit Burning my dreams away beside the fire: For death has made me wise and bitter and strong; And I am rich in all that I have lost. O starshine on the fields of long-ago, Bring me the darkness and the nightingale; Dim wealds of vanished summer places, peace of home, And silence; and the face of my friends.
'Memory', an evocation of Sassoon's stable world before the War and the way it had shattered his earlier existence and that his experiences of death have made him 'wise and bitter and strong'. It was first written out by him in his diary for 1 February 1918, while he was in Ireland waiting to embark for Egypt. It anticipates the underlying themes of his Sherston books and The Weald of Youth. This manuscript is written in Sassoon's pre-1920s handwriting.