PN Review Print and Online Poetry Magazine
News and Notes
Digital Access to PN Review
Access the latest issues, plus back issues of PN Review with Exact Editions For PN Review subscribers: to access the PN Review digital archive via the Exact Editions app Exactly or the Exact Editions website, you will first need to know your PN Review ID number. read more
Most Read... Rebecca WattsThe Cult of the Noble Amateur
(PN Review 239)
Vahni CapildeoOn Judging Prizes, & Reading More than Six Really Good Books
(PN Review 237)
Eavan BolandA Lyric Voice at Bay
(PN Review 121)
Drew MilneTom Raworth’s Writing
‘present past improved’: Tom Raworth’s Writing

(PN Review 236)
Alejandro Fernandez-OsorioPomace (trans. James Womack)
(PN Review 236)
Kei MillerIn the Shadow of Derek Walcott
1930–2017

(PN Review 235)
Poems Articles Interviews Reports Reviews Contributors
Gratis Ad 1
Gratis Ad 2
Next Issue Peter Scupham at 85: a celebration Contributions by Anne Stevenson, Robert Wells, Peter Davidson, Lawrence Sail

This poem is taken from PN Review 50, Volume 12 Number 6, July - August 1986.

The Holiday Album Charles Boyle

1 A MEETING

My friend ... So soon on first-name terms, so soon
our language lessons enable us to call
what lies between us salt, pepper, bottle of wine
or empty bottle. Sunlight's a feast
to eyes starved of the strong simplicities
of sea, sky, the cut-throat edge of whitewashed walls
against the blue: I'm like a child again, hungry
for knowledge I'll never forget, these very words
spelt out on the tablecloth the waiter
is about to whisk off - and with such dash,
such sleight-of-hand and modest eyes as become
a conjurer hired for the lull after feeding,
a true professional who leaves everything just
as he found it, and our looks of incomprehension.

2 A PREFERENCE
...


Searching, please wait... animated waiting image