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This report is taken from PN Review 153, Volume 30 Number 1, September - October 2003.

From a Journal R.F. Langley

July 1995

It is not friendliness, even though each chair, each patch of sunlight, the wren's rattle, the shadows up beside the beams, the ten, very dry, darkened, stiff spikes of lavender in the bottle on the chest of drawers, are the same as twelve months ago. Ten spikes. They must be the same ones I broke and put there on the last morning, last year. It is a sense of time that has passed, and of importance. Yes. Both those things. And of quality of object, not just of importance invested by me. St Philibert is present in Westhall, and the Tempio is in Blythburgh. And in them are the furthest reaching consequences I can muster. And set against them, the absolutes of the sea, the only thing so big and plastic, and the shoreline, acute here as anywhere, and the sky, wider and brighter and most full of changing clouds, and the insect and birdlife... Once again the burnt out verges suddenly filled up when we were close to the coast, coming along the A1120. More cars: we were in a queue, behind the same caravan from Stowmarket right into the car park, now also a fairground for the day, in Southwold. But the verges suddenly had flowers with colours. A run of cream toadflax, the greater and lesser willowherb, hawkbits, mallow more than anything, as if its wateriness could resist drought. And beds of thistle with thick, greybrown down, which leapt up in wads ...


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