Most Read... Rebecca WattsThe Cult of the Noble Amateur
(PN Review 239)
John McAuliffeBill Manhire in Conversation with John McAuliffe
(PN Review 259)
Eavan BolandA Lyric Voice at Bay
(PN Review 121)
Patricia CraigVal Warner: A Reminiscence
(PN Review 259)
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
PN Review 276
PN Review Substack

This poem is taken from PN Review 93, Volume 20 Number 1, September - October 1993.

Two Poems Gregory Woods


If there were dancers, they were not dancing. If there was a tree,
It had not emerged from the rock. Potential was enough.
Fish, if there were fish, confined themselves discreetly to the dark
Angles in the shadow of the overhang, if the moon was out
For casting shadows. (Say, for the sake of the moment, it was.)

In the presence of the dust, we celebrated our return
To sanity. It was the dust we tasted on each other's skin-
You could say we made mud of it. Adapting our accustomed
Falsehoods to the requirement of the time, we reduced each other's
Serious intensity to laughter, an excuse for tears.

If there was a clock, hidden under blankets in a basket
Or thieved by brigands in the night, it would not for want of winding
Stop.We were reconciled to that. I slept in your armpit, dreaming,
If there were dreams, of you: you in the mountains, you on horseback,
you at the cash-and-carry.There was a sentence which recurred

Searching, please wait... animated waiting image