PN Review Print and Online Poetry Magazine
News and Notes
PNR266 Now Available
The latest issue of PN Review is now available to read online. read more
Most Read... Eavan BolandA Lyric Voice at Bay
(PN Review 121)
Vahni CapildeoOn Judging Prizes, & Reading More than Six Really Good Books
(PN Review 237)
Tim Parksin conversation with Natalia Ginzburg
(PN Review 49)
M. Wynn ThomasThe Other Side of the Hedge
(PN Review 239)
Jamie OsbornIn conversation with Sasha Dugdale
(PN Review 240)
Drew MilneTom Raworth’s Writing ‘present past improved’: Tom Raworth’s Writing
(PN Review 236)
Next Issue Stav Poleg Running Between Languages Jeffrey Meyers on Mr W.H. (Auden) Miles Burrows The Critic as Cleaning Lady Timothy Ades translates Brecht, Karen Leeder translates Ulrike Almut Sandig
Poems Articles Interviews Reports Reviews Contributors
PNR 250 Poetry Archive Banner
PN Review New Issue

This report is taken from PN Review 248, Volume 45 Number 6, July - August 2019.

from the Journals
The Self Is Gone
From the Journals, August 1970
R.F. Langley
Near Aldridge, then Staffordshire, now West Midlands,

Sun bright later, things lay on thicker, moist and warm under the hedge behind Hobs Hole Wood,  many butterflies, large white1 most obviously, pairs, threes, going to the washed-out poppies like tissue, not flesh, then an understrata of walls, on bare patches of the track, in the sun, between the knot grass, trodden into flat felt but composed of long stems when you pluck one, leaving a bald area beneath, the pads of trodden grass, small, each on a shadow, smaller charlock pieces, all plants on a smaller scale on the path, rayless chamomile still standing up like loose wire, more thrashing against the toes with its heavier heads, keeping wetter longer.

The walls constantly raided by one or two small coppers, very neat and vivid, twisting so fast you lose sight and think they may have settled. Purest, fullest colour of all, blood orange with black edge and thinnest white thread round it, fast straight edge, waiting on the small bald patches like the others but so much quicker and denser, flip not float.

Did not sit and watch long enough. Too quick to move along in the humdrum for much to happen. Birds catch light in the cobalt sky but casually, a colder flash, going somewhere.

Yesterday there was the one hawthorn through the binoculars which was rich enough with a situation to be arresting – two great tits being beckoned by a willow warbler, very greeny-yellow, and a whitethroat ...

Searching, please wait... animated waiting image