PN Review Print and Online Poetry Magazine
Most Read... Kei MillerIn the Shadow of Derek Walcott
1930–2017

(PN Review 235)
Alejandro Fernandez-OsorioPomace (trans. James Womack)
(PN Review 236)
Drew MilneTom Raworth’s Writing
‘present past improved’: Tom Raworth’s Writing

(PN Review 236)
Kate BinghamPuddle
(PN Review 236)
Eavan BolandA Lyric Voice at Bay
(PN Review 121)
Anna JacksonDear Epistle
(PN Review 235)
Poems Articles Interviews Reports Reviews Contributors
Gratis Ad 1
Gratis Ad 2
Next Issue Michelle Holmes on ‘Whitman, Alabama’ Les Murray Eight Poems Gabriel Josipovici Who Dares Wins: Reflections on Translation Maureen N. McLane Four Poems James Womack Europe (after the German of Marie Luise Kaschnitz)

This article is taken from PN Review 121, Volume 24 Number 5, May - June 1998.

The Hinterland (Chapter 1 translated by Stephen Romer) Yves Bonnefoy

I have often experienced a feeling of anxiety at crossroads. At such moments it seems that here, or close by, a couple of steps away on the path I didn't take and which is already receding - that just over there a more elevated kind of country would open up, where I might have gone to live and which I've already lost. And yet, at the moment of choice, there was nothing to indicate or even to suggest that I should take the other route. Often, I have been able to follow it with my eyes and assure myself that it didn't lead to a new earth. But that does not relieve my anxiety since I also know that the other country wouldn't be remarkable for any novel aspects of its monuments or its soil. I have not taste for imagining unknown colours or forms, or a beauty superior to that of this world. I love the earth, and what I see delights me, and sometimes I even believe that the unbroken line of peaks, the majesty of the trees, the liveliness of water moving through the bottom of a ravine, the graceful façade of a church - because in some places and at certain hours they are so intense - must have been intended for our benefit. This harmony has a meaning, these landscapes and phenomena, while they are still fixed, or possibly enchanted, are almost like a language, as if the absolute would declare itself if we ...


Searching, please wait... animated waiting image