Swineburne and The Rose of the World

In London’s Wake

A Serial Published by Royal Rosamond Press

John Presco

Copyright 2022

In the last week I’ve gone on a crash course while following the trail that Jack London left behind while in the body of Martin Eden. There are confounding gaps – in his story? Did London author ‘Martin Eden’? After reading this – I have my doubts….

“There was a brief pause in the conversation they were trying to get started. Then she asked tentatively about the scar on his cheek. Even as she asked, he realized that she was making an effort to talk his talk, and he resolved to get away from it and talk hers.

“It was just an accident,” he said, putting his hand to his cheek. “One night, in a calm, with a heavy sea running, the main-boom-lift carried away, an’ next the tackle. The lift was wire, an’ it was threshin’ around like a snake. The whole watch was tryin’ to grab it, an’ I rushed in an’ got swatted.”

“Oh,” she said, this time with an accent of comprehension, though secretly his speech had been so much Greek to her and she was wondering what a lift was and what swatted meant.

This man Swineburne,” he began, attempting to put his plan into execution and pronouncing the i long.


Swineburne,” he repeated, with the same mispronunciation. “The poet.”

Swinburne,” she corrected.

“Yes, that’s the chap,” he stammered, his cheeks hot again. “How long since he died?”

“Why, I haven’t heard that he was dead.” She looked at him curiously. “Where did you make his acquaintance?”

“I never clapped eyes on him,” was the reply. “But I read some of his poetry out of that book there on the table just before you come in. How do you like his poetry?

Being a Biblical Scholar for thirty-five years I recognized an importation when I read one. This is the word I have been misusing for many years after reading scholars have identified text that was added later. Such as…

“The Ark of the Covenant rests there – this very day!”

Where did I read this? What is the passage and number? I believe I read this when I read ‘Who Wrote The Bible?. As many notes as I have published in this blog, Royal Rosamond Press, this one eludes me. I keen promising to publish my Biblical discoveries, but, I got too many stories to cover on the Waterfront. If I take time-out, I will miss – World War Three! As it is – I am lucky to be alive! When I entered Serenity Lane thirty-five years ago, the intake counselor accessed – I had six months to live.

In looking at the photograph of Jack at Beautiful Ranch, I would say he has three months to live. He is hungover. His liver is giving out. I’ve seen that look before, at AA meetings. London has the thousand yard stare. His wife is about to leave him, and the creditors are like wolves at the door. He’s been propped up, in nature, a bunch of papers thrown on the table. Who took this ‘Creditor’s Photograph’ the proof that Jack is serious about completing the novels he began. Is one of them…..Martin Eden?

I conclude we are on the brink of war. I’ve been gathering a literary team, to put together an offense and defense, and – The Reason We Fight! You have to have a good reason to fight, or, you will lose. You have to prove your culture – is better than all the rest! To see half of America offer such proof in The Great American Culture War – is astounding a confounding. Because my newspaper is a precious archive of this culture war, I will publish ‘In London’s Wake’ – for free! There so much here, and so much more – yet to be!

I have written about the Ghost Fleet in the ‘Royal Janitor’. Let me introduce ‘The Ghost Writers’ and ‘The John Barleycorn Enablers’ – for starters! I place Jack in the company of Liz Taylor and Richard Burton. Add Ken Kesey and Thomas Pynchon. Now, here come Ian Fleming. This group will be placed on the Isle of Wight as the Osborne House. They will be under the command of Sea Lord, Caspar John’s, the son of Agustus John – who may be the only man who could drink Jack London under the table. This was ‘The Bohemian Challenge when Jack and his new wife came to Oakland to build ‘The Snark’. I read ‘The Voyage of the Snark- and now own doubts Jack wrote that one – too! For this reason I add James Joyce to The Party, because we need An Ancient Reason to beat the Roman Empire again, in the manner the Brits beat-off those piggish Slave masters after they dare build Hadrian’s Wall.

And I want Artaud and Lucia Joyce on The Jury….for it begins ‘The World War of Words’. And to the stage comes The Dancer. And hark, is that my new muse on a war horse?

Together we will look for the Ark, and search for the one who wrote Martin Eden. For there is little left to do….We Mad Dogs and Englishmen, and those Drunken New World Louts. Braggards – all!

Of course London would make a great James Bond! Jack did a thousand women in that warehouse on Montgomery Street where members of the Bohemian Club, met.

“We out-drank them, and out-fucked them….those Limey Bastards! And – the French! There is nothing over there – there!”

You see, Biblical scholars can find no evidence Solomon’s Temple – existed – or his kingdom. I suspect HE IS AN INVENTION….invented to hide the fact and conceal the truth God’s Chosen People lost the war, lost the Ark…..and never got it back! So, with that riddle – SOLVED – let us ask why the name SWINEBURNE is mentioned – thrice?

It’s time to grow up – and wake up! London was a Socialist – and an atheist….who was bid to find…



To be continued

“Before the rooster crows, you will deny me three times.”

What is the significance of the rooster crowing in regards to Peter denying Jesus three times? | GotQuestions.org

“In reading the history of early California writers, the word BOHEMIANISM is used quite often. Because Liz Taylor and I are kin to Ian Fleming, and I am authoring two Bond books, I declare Fleming a Bohemian author. In Bond of Nebraska I will have James look into the reason many evangelical ministers are encouraging their flock not to be vaccinated. This will be the first time a real crisis will be dealt with by 007.

Algernon Charles Swinburne was born in 1837 to a rather illustrious family. His father was Admiral Charles Henry Swinburne (son of Sir John Henry Swinburne) and his mother was Lady Jane Henrietta Ashburnham (daughter of the 3rd Earl of Ashburnham) and so, as their eldest child and a son, great things were no doubt expected of little Algernon.




Caspar John – Wikipedia

Born the second of the five sons of the artist Augustus John (1878–1961) and his first wife, Ida John (née Nettleship),[1] John was raised with his siblings in an undisciplined manner, frequently dressing as ragamuffins, to such an extent that his maternal grandmother, Ada Nettleship, attempted to secure and raise them herself.[2][3] At the age of nine, he went with his brothers to Dane Court preparatory school in Parkstone, Dorset.[4] There he won the prize for the best gentleman in the school and a copy of Jane’s Fighting Ships, and it was this, together with a wish to seek a more orderly existence, that inspired him to join the Royal Navy.[1] His father strenuously objected, but his stepmother helped persuade him to support his son.[5] In 1916 he entered the Royal Naval College, Osborne on the Isle of Wight, at the age of thirteen.[6] He transferred to the Royal Naval College, Dartmouth in 1917 and passed out eighty-third of a hundred in 1920.[7] John is remembered at Dartmouth by the naming of the college’s theatre and lecture hall, the Caspar John Hall.[8]

The Royal Janitor

Posted on March 17, 2018 by Royal Rosamond Press

Swineburne, Rosamond, Isle of Wight

Posted on August 23, 2013 by Royal Rosamond Press

by George Richmond, watercolour, 1843

“One of Swinburne’s earliest works about love is Rosamond, a drama in the Elizabethan style, but one that employs a medieval setting and real historical figures as characters. Published in 1860, this play is extra-ordinarily significant for the poet’s future themes and artistic development.

Algernon Charles Swinburne was born in 1837 to a rather illustrious family. His father was Admiral Charles Henry Swinburne (son of Sir John Henry Swinburne) and his mother was Lady Jane Henrietta Ashburnham (daughter of the 3rd Earl of Ashburnham) and so, as their eldest child and a son, great things were no doubt expected of little Algernon.  He grew up in lovely East Dene in Bonchurch on the Isle of Wight (or as I like to call it, the ‘Isle of Victorian Splendidness’) and went off to Eton, then to Oxford.  So far, so traditional.  You can see by the portrait of him at six years old (above), he already had his vibrantly red hair, and by 16 he was already writing poetry.  The only blip on his record was being temporarily expelled (or ‘rusticated’, which sounds like a type of bread.  I do like a rusticated loaf) for publically supporting the attempted assissination of Napoleon III by Felice Orsini.


Rosamond possesses many of the virtues of Swinburne’s later tragedy Chastelard, which has attracted somewhat more critical attention, but the earlier work is usually dismissed as a mere Pre-Raphaelite exercise. Both plays, however, prove inspired throughout by Swinburne’s youthful enchantment with courtly love topoi. In these dramas we can discern the depth of his fascination with the topoi of medieval romance and tourbadour poetry, as well as their effect [37/38] on his treatment of the carnal and the ideal aspects of his constant theme, love.

Analysis of these two works with emphasis on their courtly elements reveals the extent of his early assimilation of values fundamental to medieval love literature, which he adapted to his “modern,” that is, Romantic world view and to his unique artistic needs. In Swinburne’s version of Rosamond, the passionate entanglement between Henry II and his mistress culminates with Rosamond’s murder by his wife, Eleanor of Aquitaine, perhaps the most famous heroine of courtly love lore.2 Similarly, an ethos derived from courtly convention underlies Chastelard’s love for Mary Stuart.

The first of Rosamond’s five scenes is the most forceful in demonstrating Swinburne’s debt to troubadour conventions as well as to Pre-Raphaelite stylistic influences. Courtly love preoccupations and the medieval setting overshadow elements of Jacobean revenge tragedy throughout the play. Swinburne’s Rosamond, rather than the historical queen of the Courts of Love, espouses the religion of love and, as a result of her lived creed, is poisoned by Eleanor out of jealousy. The play’s predominantly lyrical psychodramatic vignettes stress highlights of the relationships among the four main characters during the last months of Rosamond’s life. The action begins in spring and ends in late summer, but the only explicit time lapse occurs between the fourth and fifth scenes, when Henry is abroad, subduing the French provinces. In addition to the historical characters, Swinburne creates the courtier Bouchard, the serviceable object of the jealous Queen’s ambivalent affections. But Rosamond is significant primarily for the characterization of its tragic heroine, whose passion for Henry suggests the power of the courtly love influence on young Swinburne. In the “Prelude” to Tristram of Lyonesse (written nine years later), Swinburne catalogues “the sweet shining signs of women’s names / That [38/39] mark the months out and the weeks anew,” which Love “moves in changeless change of seasons through / To fill the days up of his dateless year” (Poems, IV, 208. Alongside Guenevere, Hero, Cleopatra, and the rest is “The rose-white sphere of flower-named Rosamond.” This Swinburnean heroine conceives of herself not as an individual but rather as a type, the beautiful woman who inspires insatiable and potentially destructive passions: “Yea, I am found the woman in all tales, / The face caught always in the story’s face.” She is Helen, Cressida, Hero, and Cleopatra. In her particular “tale,” as in Swinburne’s versions of stories about Cleopatra, Guenevere, and Yseult, the heroine herself is destroyed. Yet we are conditioned from the play’s first scene, as the “flower-white” Rosamond wrestles with the fact of her own mutability, to accept the drama of her death as merely one episode in Love’s timeless, cyclic tragedy.

Swinburne’s choice of the “rose of the world” as one of his first subjects for verse suggests that he associated his conception of Rosamond with courtly love allegory, specifically the Roman de la Rose, in which the rose is the eternal symbol of the beloved and of the perfect beauty that is fearfully transient but simultaneously immortal.3 As in Swinburne’s later lyrics “Before the Mirror” and “The Year of the Rose,” Rosamond’s central symbol is the rose, and, like them, this play recapitulates the major preoccupations of courtly love poetry: the apotheosis of beauty; love as the necessary consequence of beauty fear of mutability; and a final insistence on the immortality of both love and beauty, which can be attained, paradoxically, only through death.

[39/40] The first scene of Rosamond characterizes its heroine as simultaneously enchanted with her own beauty, exalted by her love affair with Henry, and insecure about the permanence of her beauty and her love. Surrounded by the ephemeral rose blossoms with which she identifies in the maze at Woodstock, she is alone with her maid, Constance. Here Rosamond reveals her concern with the world’s slanderous gossip about her, and as the scene progresses she attempts gradually to rebuild her self-confidence-in her beauty, in Henry’s continuing devotion, and in the unassailable value of beauty and of love. At first, she is defensive:

If six leaves make a rose, I stay red yet
And the wind nothing ruins me; who says
I am at waste? (Tragedies, I, 231)

She repeatedly challenges Constance to “say I am not fair,” in order to elicit the praise she pretends to despise. She equivocates between self-doubt and unabashed vanity: “Leave off my praise . . . quaint news to hear, That I am fair, have hair strung through with gold” (Tragedies, I, 232). Then she renews herself by remembering Henry’s courtly verses of adulation, and concludes by defining her own and the world’s goodness purely in terms of beauty, the ultimate value that Swinburne everywhere associates with love:

But I that am
Part of the perfect witness for the world,
How good it is; I chosen in God’s eyes
To fill the lean account of under men, The lank and hunger-bitten ugliness
Of half his people . . . I that am, ah yet,
And shall be till the worm has share in me,
Fairer than love or the clean truth of God,
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
I . . . have roses in my name, and make
All flowers glad to set their colour by. (Tragedies, I, 236- 37)

Earlier, Eleanor has revealed that the source of her jealousy is her homeliness. Angrily and plaintively, she compares herself with Rosamond:

Sweet stature hath she and fair eyes, men say;
I am but black, with hair that keeps the braid,[40/41]
And my face hurt and bitten of the sun
Past medicine of all waters. (Tragedies, I, 245)

The Artaud and Joyce Line

Posted on July 22, 2021 by Royal Rosamond Press

I want my muse, Rena Easton, to choregraph my Artaud Joyce Fashion Show that must premiere in Bozeman Montana in order to fulfill prophecy. I insist she wear a mask. I want to remember her beauty as it was, so long ago!

I want Niesha Calkins to play the Gamelan, and the actor, Paul Drake to read ‘The Man Suicided by Society, as Lara Roozemond, leads off ‘The Lunatic Line’ in a freeze-framed dance down the runway..

My fashion show will be dedicated to all cowboys and wanna-be rednecks, who chose death over wearing a mask and getting a shot. Rena Easton will close the show with her Dance Macabre of Lunacy, she coming to the end of the runway, and declaring;

“I salute you, those who are about to die, making the greatest fashion statement, of all time! To honor you, I rip off my mask – and die with you – in the greatest artistic statement – ever!


John Rosamond Presco

Antonin Artaud – Wikipedia

Van Gogh, the Suicide Provoked by Society (monoskop.org)

” One can speak of the good mental health of Van Gogh who, in his whole adult life, cooked only one of his hands and did nothing else except once to cut off his left ear,
in a world in which every day one eats vagina cooked in green sauce or penis of newborn child whipped and beaten to a pulp,
just as it is when plucked from the sex of its mother. “

(37) Lucia Joyce: FULL CAPACITY Trailer – YouTube

(37) Gamelan in New World (Royalty Free Background Music) – YouTube

Artaud’s Homage to Van Gough

Swineburne’s Pre-Raphaelite Fair Lady

Posted on June 22, 2018 by Royal Rosamond Press

On this day, June 21, 2018, I declare Lara Roozemond, a Pre-Raphaelite Poet – and Muse! She is ‘Denim and Silk’.

Swineburne’s Pre-Raphaelite Fair Lady

Posted on February 16, 2013 by Royal Rosamond Press


In 1969 I began looking for a spiritual vehicle to move my art in a new direction. I discovered the Pre-Raphaelite. I shared my discovery with Christine who had become absorbed in the Ring Trilogy of J.R. Tolkien. Here are the images that would consume our culture, and the counter-culture. Add Enya’s music, and the worship of women is born. Rosamond’s posters were found all over the world in 1972. Lovers of Rosamond’s work began to ask questions. Some fans thought she was a man. Was she a Lesbian? Why didn’t she render men, her love objects?

After I would finish a painting I would write a poem inspired by my work. Sometimes I would play my guitar before my painting, I improvising, looking for new notes and chords.

None of my imput appears in the movie scripts or biographies about Christine Rosamond because the un-creative had taken control of the artistic legacy I carried on from my grandfather, Royal Rosamond. The non-artists know nothing about art, poetry, and music. They proved to be bad business people. They destroyed my family.

In 1970 I considered my family becoming like the Rossetti family. Gabriel Rossette was a good friend of Swineburne and did a painting of Fair Rosamund. In 1996 Jimmy Rosamond put this link to Elizabeth Rosemond Taylor’s website on the Rosamond Family History. I kept it a secret that Liz was our kin lest the Dark Ones swoop down and capture her with their lies and keep her in their cult tower.


Vicki Presco told me Christine accused her of incorporating her life in the stories Vicki told about herself. Vicki captured my daughter, and now Drew. Vicki loves family secrets. Vicki give me no credit for being Rosamond’s teacher. Vicki set-up the adult Heir for an arrest with the help of Garth’s divorce attorney who submitted this statement to the Probate Court;

I was told by the Monterey Police Officer, who arrested Shannon Benton, after she broke into and entered the decedents home on three separate occasions and that in her opinion the only way Ms. Benton would learn her lesson is if she spent time in jail.”

On the eve of her mother’s funeral, Shannon came downstairs with an armful of papers and demanded to know who had been rifling through them. Shannon saw herself as the guardian of her mother’s legacy.

The lying parasites who grabbed control of my families artistic legacy with the help of Vicki, began to depict themselves as Champions of Women’s Rights via their Queen of Women……Fair Rosamond Benton. The false worship of the Rose of the world, had begun.

Vicki declined to serve as Christine’s name Executor because she feared the wrath of Shannon. Instead, she dropped out into the darkness where the outsiders put he on their thrown and brought their lies to her in order to get her Seal of Opproval.

Jon Presco

Copyright 2013

In “The Swinburnian Woman” Antony H. Harrison points out that “female figures who appear as the object of a man’s consuming passion dominate Swinburne’s work” (90), and according to him, these women appear within one of three subtypes, all of which share cruelty as well as ideality as their characteristics:

(1) the passionate: Mary Stuart, Rosamond, Phaedra, and Iseult of Ireland. “Unlike the stereotypes of the mythical category, these women are all highly individualized, and, rather than treating their victims with the indifference of Lucretian gods, they deeply love the men they kill or threaten” (90).
(2) the mythical: Atalanta, Celopatra, Dolores, Tannhauser’s Venus. and Rosamond, Queen of the Lombards. This figure, in contrast, is a “sensuous, timeless and dispassionate belle dame sans merci whose mythical or mythicized incarnations draw down to death all men who love them” 90-91)
(3) the matriarchal: Althae in Atalanta in Calydon and the maternal figures in nature. “The Triumph of Time,” “By the North Sea,” “Hertha,” “On the Cliffs.” “Metaphorically or actually maternal figures appear as second remove from the actual life of a given male protagonist, but they exert compelling control over his fate because they explicitly represent both the source of his life and the comprehensive matrix to which all men return at death” (91).
According to Harrison, in Swinburne’s “largely Blakean mythology of creation, total freedom pre-exists individual man’s incarnation, and it is that condition of freedom which is, ultimately, the land of his heart’s desire. In life woman is the pohysical embodiment of the generative/destructive matrix” (99). The Swinburnian woman is more than a particularly sinister version of the Keatsian la belle dame sans merci, for like the women of courtly love poetry she possesses a kind of religious significance.





Atalanta was the daughter of Iasus (or Mainalos or Schoeneus, according to Hyginus), a Boeotian (according to Hesiod) or an Arcadian princess (according to the Bibliotheca). She is often described as a goddess.[citation needed] The Bibliotheca is the only one who gives an account of Atalanta’s birth and upbringing. King Iasus wanted a son; when Atalanta was born, he left her on a mountaintop to die. Some stories say that a she-bear suckled and cared for Atalanta until hunters found and raised her, and she learned to fight and hunt as a bear would. She was later reunited with her father.
Having grown up in the wilderness, Atalanta became a fierce hunter and was always happy. She took an oath of virginity to the goddess Artemis.[2][3]


A Sea Spell
Her lute hangs shadowed in the apple-tree,
While flashing fingers weave the sweet-strung spell
Between its chords; and as the wild notes swell,
The sea-bird for those branches leaves the sea.
But to what sound her listening ear stoops she?
What netherworld gulf-whispers doth she hear,
In answering echoes from what planisphere,
Along the wind, along the estuary?
She sinks into her spell: and when full soon
Her lips move and she soars into her song,
What creatures of the midmost main shall throng
In furrowed self-clouds to the summoning rune,
Till he, the fated mariner, hears her cry,
And up her rock, bare breasted, comes to die?

About Royal Rosamond Press

I am an artist, a writer, and a theologian.
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1 Response to Swineburne and The Rose of the World

  1. Reblogged this on Rosamond Press and commented:

    Time to finish my books and bring Jack London to Eugene Oregon.

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