REVIEW by Tony Brown

NWR Issue 102


by Philip Gross

In his epigraph to Later, Philip Gross quotes Michael Wood’s Introduction to Edward Said’s On Late Style:

It is worth pausing over the delicately shifting meanings of the word late, ranging from missed appointments through the cycles of nature to vanished life.[…] Dead persons have certainly got themselves beyond time, but what temporal longing lurks in our calling them ‘late’?

These poems insist in the focussing of attention on the ‘delicately shifting’ nature of the world around us and to the tantalising difficulties of our achieving definition, semantically and visually, on its elusive nature and our place in it. These are large, indeed fundamental, concerns, manifestly, but this is a poetry – care-full, meditative and above all attentive to the perceived world – that is equal to the challenges the poet sets...

Tony Brown is Professor of English at Bangor University and Co-director of the RS Thomas Research Centre there. The founder editor (1995–2007) of Welsh Writing in English: A Yearbook of Critical Essays (1995–2007), his monograph on RS Thomas in UWP’s Writers of Wales series has recently been reissued.

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previous review: The Drive
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