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This report is taken from PN Review 243, Volume 45 Number 1, September - October 2018.

from The Journals
Presencing the Bright Particulars
R.F. Langley
23 JANUARY 2007

Sun and blue sky. Winter sun. It has been cold; there is crushed ice on some puddles. In Edwards’ Lane, on the bank which catches the warmth, small red nettles have flowers, as do a speedwell and a white nettle. There are leaves of arum and buttercup. Earlier, in the church,1 I was stepping up the chancel looking at the back of Mr Coke’s head up on the wall, when a dog barked from across the road, from down opposite the public house,2  and the bark, a light one, sounded closer than it must have been. A marble statue, sunshine in a church, a dog barking... for some reason I received a momentary sense of a summer years ago, on one of our holidays in these parts, distinctly, a mental taste as it were. Marble in bright sun. Dog bark. I can fetch it back now, a touch of discovery, of wandering through the country lanes, of companions, of coming at the good statue from an angle. Mostly of the sunlight inside the building.

I pass from thinking about Wallace Stevens to thinking of Carlos Williams,3 the presencing of the bright particulars, which begin to awaken, brown weeds, pallid or dull green weeds, the nettles with striped stems and a leaf, or several, at their tops, held aloft. The mash of dead leaves cleared off the asphalt now, swept close in under the verges so the road feels cleaned… By the road, under the surge of blue, the white cumulus driven from the northeast, the upstanding stuff, twiggy.

The ...

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