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Short poem

Selected Poetry of John Askham (ca. 1825-1894)

from Representative Poetry On-line
Prepared by members of the Department of English at the University of Toronto
from 1912 to the present and published by the University of Toronto Press from 1912 to 1967.
RPO Edited by Ian Lancashire
A UTEL (University of Toronto English Library) Edition
Published by the Web Development Group, Information Technology Services, University of Toronto Libraries
© 2005, Ian Lancashire for the Department of English, University of Toronto

Index to poems

What though grief rack the breast?
Doth there not come a rest?
Let us then do our best:
Night cometh on.
        (Work While it is Day, 25-28)
  1. Work While it is Day

Notes on Life and Works

Born in Wellingborough, Northamptonshire, on July 25, 1825, John Askham had almost no formal education. After labouring as a child in his father's shoe-making shop, Askham earned his living as a shoe-maker. He taught himself to read and write and published his verses in local newspapers and then as volumes, financed by subscriptions. These books included Sonnets on the Months and other Poems (1863), Descriptive Poems, Miscellaneous Pieces and Miscellaneous Sonnets (1866), Judith and other Poems, and a Centenary of Sonnets (1868), Poems and Sonnets (1875), and Sketches in Prose and Verse (1893). In 1871 Northampton elected Askham to the city's first school board, and Askham went on to hold small offices in local government. He and his first wife, née Bonham, had three daughters. He married a second time to a woman named Cox. Paralyzed by illness, Askham died October 28, 1894. His grave lies in Wellingborough cemetery.

Biographical information

Given name: John
Family name: Askham
Birth date: ca. 25 July 1825
Death date: 28 October 1894
Nationality: English
Literary period: Victorian
          Civil Servant
          Northampton, Northamptonshire, England
          Wellingborough, Northamptonshire, England: 1825
Buried at: London Road cemetery, Wellingborough
First RPO edition: 2001