Search Results

Advanced Search

1 to 15 of 39 results

Sort by:

Filter by:


Article Types



On Michael Longley

Colin Burrow: Michael Longley

18 October 2017
... There are​ few contemporary poets as likeable as MichaelLongley. That’s not because his poems are simply amiable, but because he looks at things hard and clearly and invites his readers to share his acts of seeing. In his new book, Angel Hill (Cape, £10), even ...

Two Poems

Michael Longley

6 February 1997
... January 12, 1996 He would have been a hundred today, my father, So I write to him in the trenches and describe How he lifts with tongs from the brazier an ember And in its glow reads my words and sets them aside. The Mustard Tin You are dying and not sleeping soundly because Your eyes stay open and it doesn’t seem to hurt. We want you to blink and find three of us standing For a few seconds between ...

Room to Rhyme

Michael Longley

23 September 2015
... in memory of Seamus Heaney I I blew a kiss across the stage to you When we read our poems in Lisdoonvarna Two weeks before you died. Arrayed in straw The Armagh Rhymers turned up at the end. II In the middle of a field in Mourne country Standing side by side, looking straight ahead We peed against a fragment of stone wall, St Patrick’s windbreak, the rain’s urinal. III On our pilgrimages ...

Two Poems

Michael Longley

7 March 2013
... Lizard Orchid I All ears in the Mugello What with the far cuckoo, The harmonising frog And crickets everywhere, Domestic sounds as well – Heidi baking a chestnut Cake, Lorenzo’s ladder Scraping the cherry tree – We find in Silvano’s Sloping upper meadow Close to the wood, regal Among seeding grasses, An orchid, each lower lip A streamer, extroversion Requiring subtle breezes, A name to silence ...

After Amergin

Michael Longley

5 April 2018
... I am the trout that vanishes Between the stepping stones. I am the elver that lingers Under the little bridge. I am the leveret that breakfasts Close to the fuchsia hedge. I am the stoat that dances Around the erratic boulder. I am the skein of sheep’s wool Wind and barbed wire tangle. I am the mud and spittle That make the swallows’ nest. I am the stonechat’s music Of pebble striking pebble ...

Five Poems

Michael Longley

8 January 1987
... Eva Braun The moon beams like Eva Braun’s bare bottom On rockets aimed at London, then at the sky Where, in orbit to the dark side, astronauts Read from Mein Kompf to a delighted world. Geisha Though the partition opens at a touch She makes a pin-hole and watches people Watching the sky where a heavy bomber Journeys to her mirror and jar of rouge. Terezin No room has ever been as silent as the room ...

The Butchers

Michael Longley

9 November 1989
... When he had made sure there were no survivors in his house And that all the suitors were dead, heaped in blood and dust Like fish that fishermen with fine-meshed nets have hauled Up gasping for salt-water, evaporating in the sunshine, Odysseus, spattered with muck and like a lion dripping blood From his chest and cheeks after devouring a farmer’s bullock, Ordered the disloyal housemaids to sponge ...

Two Poems

Michael Longley

19 February 2004
... Wooden Hare Sarah drew a hare under a sky full of large stars When she was ten: now, more than a childhood later, In antique Paraty where the sea seeps up the street Depositing between boulder-sized cobbles sand And the feathers of snowy egrets and frigate birds, We meet the hare again, an ‘indigenous artefact’, And want to know everything about the animal, Its crouching body carved out of cajeto ...

Three Poems

Michael Longley

20 October 2011
... Boat What’s the Greek for boat, You ask, old friend, Fellow voyager Approaching Ithaca – Oh, flatulent sails, Wave-winnowing oars, Shingle-scrunching keel – But, so close to home, There’s a danger always Of amnesiac storms, Waterlogged words. Marigolds, 1960 You are dying. Why do we fight? You find my first published poem – ‘Not worth the paper it’s printed on,’ You say. She gave him ...

Three Poems

Michael Longley: ‘For Eddie Linden at Seventy’, ‘Call’ and ‘The Wren’

7 July 2005
... For Eddie Linden at Seventy I’m thinking of the pope and you, Eddie, As I dander towards the New York Public Library to peek at the field notebooks Of Edward Thomas wandering in England In pursuit of spring before poetry and war. Somewhere between Dorval and La Guardia I encountered John Paul among the clouds Like a surge of energy from the engines. Now he lies stiff and full of chemicals In precarious ...

Three Poems

Michael Longley

27 June 2002
... a cabbage-white. On the Dooaghtry cairn which commemorates God knows whom a tortoiseshell alighted To sun itself. It had been wintering In memory’s outhouse and escaped the wren. Petalwort For Michael Viney You want your ashes to swirl along the strand At Thallabaun – amongst clockwork, approachable, Circumambulatory sanderlings, crab shells, Bladderwrack, phosphorescence at spring tide – ...

Baucis & Philemon

Michael Longley

17 December 1992
... In the Phrygian hills an oak tree grows beside a lime tree And a low wall encloses them. Not far away lies bogland. I have seen the spot myself. It should convince you – If you need to be convinced – that the power of heaven Is limitless, that whatever the gods desire gets done. Where a drowned valley makes a sanctuary for water birds (Divers, coots), a whole community used to plough – until ...

Fading Out

John Redmond

2 November 1995
The Ghost Orchid 
by Michael Longley.
Cape, 66 pp., £7, May 1995, 0 224 04112 6
Show More
Show More
... even more pleasant is the difficulty of being found. Among other splendid things,‘the West’ is the land of transplanted urban dream kingdoms, a paradise for poets who do not wish to be disturbed. Michael Viney’s documentary, The Corner of the Eye, opens with a slow sweep across this landscape, a picture of distances fringed with purple and a few tawny cows nosing through the foreground, then ...

Two Poems

John Burnside

20 September 2001
... voice, but I’ll go out at midnight in a haze of moths and pollen, on the Hella road, finding and naming, one thing at a time: fieldfare, redshank, cranesbill, alchemilla. A Duck Island Flora For MichaelLongley On the road to the Brensholmen ferry: snow gentians, mineral blue and perfect, like a child’s idea of north; but here is all marshland and water between the fields where they still cut and ...
23 April 1987
Selected Literary Criticism of Louis MacNeice 
edited by Alan Heuser.
Oxford, 279 pp., £19.50, March 1987, 0 19 818573 1
Show More
Show More
... to The New Oxford Book of Irish Verse (1986), that a ‘Northern Ireland Renaissance’ is ‘largely a journalistic entity’. Seamus Heaney, Derek Mahon, John Montague, Paul Muldoon, Seamus Deane, MichaelLongley and their colleagues are from the North, and they are poets: but they are individual poets, not a school. They are not even two rival schools, though some of them have started fabricating a ...

Read anywhere with the London Review of Books app, available now from the App Store for Apple devices, Google Play for Android devices and Amazon for your Kindle Fire.

Read More

Sign up to our newsletter

For highlights from the latest issue, our archive and the blog, as well as news, events and exclusive promotions.

Newsletter Preferences