As founder and editor Michael Schmidt says, ‘The life expectancy of poetry magazines is often a butterfly’s span. Few reach ten issues, fewer still a hundred. To reach 250 issues is evidence of editorial tenacity and conviction.’
This issue debuts our brand-new redesign, but keeps all of our usual features: reviews, essays and, of course, poems. Highlights include a new poem, The Fly, by Paul Muldoon; a lecture on Denise Riley from Sinéad Morrissey’s 2018 StAnza Lecture; a collection of some of Elaine Feinstein’s final poems before her unfortunate passing in September; and four poems by Parwana Fayyaz. This landmark edition is really not to be missed, and if you haven’t already, you can subscribe here.
To commemorate our reaching 250 issues, we’re overjoyed to share the news that you can now access the PN Review archive at the Poetry Archive! There are some fantastic pieces from our archives available to read and listen to, including some by poets we published right back in our first ever issue in 1973—when we began as Poetry Nation—making this a truly publication-spanning retrospective.
Such a fool as I am you had better ignore
Tongue twist, malevolent, fat mouthed
I have no language but that other one
His the Devil’s, no mouse I, creeping out of the cheese
With a peaked cap scanning the distance
Looking for truth.
Words when I have them, come out, the Devil
Encouraging, grinning from the other side of the street
And my tears
Streaming, a blubbered face, when I am not laughing
Where in all this
Is calm, measure,
The Lord’s peace?
From Poetry Nation 1 Number 1, 1973.
To read work from our archive, head over to the Poetry Archive by following this link. And be sure to subscribe to the PN Review so you don’t miss out on this and future editions. It’s published six times a year and showcases some of the best voices in poetry!