Margot Ruddock

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Marguerite (Margot) Ruddock (1907–1951), who used the stage name Margot Collis, was an English actress, poet and singer. She had a relationship with W. B. Yeats starting in 1934. Their correspondence was published as Ah, Sweet Dancer (1970).

Yeats edited her poems for publication, but it is not clear how much change he made to them. He included some of them in the Oxford Book of Modern Verse, which he edited.

Some of her poems have been set as songs by the composer Robert Erickson.

She was married twice: first to John Collis, with whom she had a son, Michael, and secondly to Raymond Lovell, with whom she had a daughter, Simone Lovell. She died in 1951, when she was 44.

During her marriage to Raymond Lovell she had an affair with Yeats. When they met in 1934, Yeats was 69 and Margot was 27. Their affair was conducted fitfully over the next few years - it's not clear whether there was an actual physical act involved. The affair broke down and Margot Ruddock became mentally unstable. Some months later she followed Yeats (uninvited) out to the island of Majorca, where he was working with the Indian monk Shri Purohit Swami. Margot ended up in an asylum in Madrid from where she had to be sprung by Yeats and his friends[1]. Yeats' poem "A Crazed Girl" is believed to be inspired by Margot.

References

  1. ^ W. B. Yeats A Life, Volume II: The Arch-Poet 1915-1939 R. F. Foster
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