“‘To do nothing at all is the most difficult thing in the world, the most difficult and the most intellectual.” – Oscar Wilde
Irish poet Niall McDevitt tells the story of fellow Dubliner Oscar Wilde at the key sites in Chelsea.
The focus is on 1895, the year of The Importance of Being Earnest and Wilde’s instantaneous martyrdom, which – according to Cyril Connolly – “set the aesthetic movement back by 20 years”. But Chelsea has also been home to several of the nineteenth and twentieth century’s most outstanding poets. McDevitt will conjure up fleeting vistas of Percy Bysshe Shelley, Leigh Hunt, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, as well as the later TS Eliot, Dylan Thomas and John Betjemen.
There are bonus cameos by novelists Mary Shelley, Jane Austen, Mark Twain, Graham Greene,
and a tragic turn by the Irish nationalist poet Speranza, better known as Lady Wilde, Oscar’s mother.
Wilde’s martyrdom will be seen sandwiched in time between that of Julian Assange and Sir Thomas More.
Meet at Knightsbridge tube at the Brompton Street exit at 11am. The walk will last approximately two hours and finish on the Kings Road.