Cornwall and the “Cousin Jack,” by T. J. Nicholas. Ilfracombe: Arthur H. Stockwell, Ltd., 1947. 2nd edition. 236 pp. (in verse)
–from the cover: “The life story of a miner, covering three-quarters of a century, and written in poetical form. The author, a Cornishman, left school at the age of ten to work in a Cornish tin mine…”
–from the prolegomenon [introduction]: “A life-long miner, working far below God’s garden, with the brilliant radiance of His morning sun and the evening sunset’s chromatic tones, down in stygian darkness, whilst far above the soft glowing moon and the twinkling stars joined exquisite shades of God’s flowers, the author wondered at times what a book would be like if it were written by a man without education. Having looked for such a curio in vain, he tackled the job, and laying aside the heavy tools that miners use, with age-old and trembling fingers he clutched a tiny pencil, and embarked on this reminiscent exploration, which covers three quarters of a century.
The writer does not profess knowledge of prose mechanics, and less of the spiritual urge in poetry. The swing of the lines comes from a hymn sung in early boyhood days, and it is written in this form to make easier reading for those who have been too busy in performing essential tasks in world-work to step aside into the flowery paths that lead to culture and knowledge…”