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A.E. Stallings, photographed by Milos Bicanski/Getty Images for Homefront TV, September 8, 2011 in Athens, Greece

I have chosen to publish this essay on Easter Monday 2017 to mark the centenary of the death of Edward Thomas, who died on Easter Monday 1917. The first part of the essay looks at “Easter Monday”, a sonnet Eleanor Farjeon wrote in his memory. The second part examines “Fairy-tale Logic”, another sonnet, written by A.E. Stallings. Both pieces contain numerous cryptic messages that would seem to be the work of ingenious mathematical minds. It is highly unlikely, however, that the authors were conscious of the existence of these cryptic messages. I was drawn to this approach to analysis after discovering, 22 years ago, amazing numerical patterns in Elegies by Douglas Dunn.

Cryptic Structures in Farjeon and Stallings