Most Read... Rebecca WattsThe Cult of the Noble Amateur
(PN Review 239)
John McAuliffeBill Manhire in Conversation with John McAuliffe
(PN Review 259)
Patricia CraigVal Warner: A Reminiscence
(PN Review 259)
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)
Next Issue Gwyneth Lewis ‘Spiderings’ Ian Thomson ‘Fires were started: Tallinn, 1944’ Adrian May ‘Traditionalism and Tradition’ Judith Herzberg ‘Poems’ translated by Margitt Helbert Horatio Morpurgo ‘What is a Book?’
Poems Articles Interviews Reports Reviews Contributors
Reader Survey
PN Review Substack

This item is taken from PN Review 143, Volume 28 Number 3, January - February 2002.

Letter from Robert Nye
Hardy's Pathos

Sir:

In his article 'Some Versions of Pathos' (PNR 142), David Gervais claims that Thomas Hardy's poems following the death of his first wife leave out of account both her view of him and the fact that 'it was a long time since he had even liked her in life'. Neither claim is true. Gervais must have forgotten in particular the great poem 'An Upbraiding', where Hardy turns upon his own grief, criticising himself by speaking in the imagined voice of Emma:

Now I am dead you sing to me
    The songs we used to know,
But while I lived you had no wish
    Or care for doing so.

Now I am dead you come to me
    In the moonlight, comfortless;
Ah, what would I have given alive
    To win such tenderness!

When you are dead, and stand to me
    Not differenced, as now,
But like again, will you be cold
    As when we lived, or how?
                        (Moments of Vision, 1917)

ROBERT NYE
County Cork


This item is taken from PN Review 143, Volume 28 Number 3, January - February 2002.



Readers are asked to send a note of any misprints or mistakes that they spot in this item to editor@pnreview.co.uk
Searching, please wait... animated waiting image