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: Published under the pseudonym, Clive Hamilton, Spirits in Bondage was C. S. Lewis' first book. Released in 1919. Most of the poems appear to have been written between 1915 and 1918, a period during which Lewis was a student under W. T. Kirkpatrick, a military trainee at Oxford, and a soldier serving in the trenches of World War I. Their outlook varies from Romantic expressions of love for the beauty and simplicity of nature to cynical statements about the presence of evil in this world. In a September 12, 1918 letter to his friend Arthur Greeves, Lewis said that his book was, "mainly strung around the idea that I mentioned to you before--that nature is wholly diabolical & malevolent and that God, if he exists, is outside of and in opposition to the cosmic arrangements." In his cynical poems, Lewis is dealing with the same questions about evil in nature that Alfred Lord Tennyson explored from a position of troubled faith in "In Memoriam A. H." (Stanzas 54f). In a letter written perhaps to reassure his father, Lewis claimed, "You know who the God I blaspheme is and that it is not the God that you or I worship, or any other Christian." Whatever Lewis believed at that time, the attitude in many of these poems is quite different from the attitude he expressed in his many Christian books from the 1930s on. Attempts in movies and on stage plays to portray Lewis as a sheltered professor who knew little about pain until the death of his wife late in life, have to deal not only with the many tragedies he experienced from a boy on, but also with the disturbing issues he faced in many of these early poems.