PN Review Print and Online Poetry Magazine
Most Read... Rebecca WattsThe Cult of the Noble Amateur
(PN Review 239)
Mark FordLetters And So It Goes
Letters from Young Mr Grace
(aka John Ashbery)

(PN Review 239)
Henry Kingon Toby Martinez de las Rivas
(PN Review 244)
Eavan BolandA Lyric Voice at Bay
(PN Review 121)
Kei Millerthe Fat Black Woman
In Praise of the Fat Black Woman & Volume

(PN Review 241)
Vahni CapildeoOn Judging Prizes, & Reading More than Six Really Good Books
(PN Review 237)
Next Issue Sasha Dugdale, Intimacy and other poems Eugene Ostashevsky, The Feeling Sonnets Nyla Matuk, The Resistance Alex Wylie, Democratic Rags Brigit Pegeen Kelly, Two poems from the archive
Poems Articles Interviews Reports Reviews Contributors
PNR 250 Poetry Archive Banner
Monthly Carcanet Books
PN Review Blog

This poem is taken from PN Review 249, Volume 46 Number 1, September - October 2019.

For Laurence Olivier
with Years of Gratitude
Stanley Moss
1.
I do not speak at the beginning
but the end of a breath.
My first night on a public stage,
not having the money for the toll bridge or subway,
I swam across the Thames and East River.
I was an Ancient Greek naked actor,
I played tragedy and comedy, the attendance
by law only free Athenian men.

Like any child, I acted,
most stop in their teens,
let the curtain fall forever.
They dream their own dreams,
while actors spend their lives
acting out the dreams of others.

2.
I sometimes explode a spoken word.
I never gabble. In Shakespeare’s day,
...


Searching, please wait... animated waiting image