Through a watery light of after-rain this bed, its personal history, brought back by container ship from Japan shows in ruffled covers lines that say love spent the night here, its indentations, your body’s traces.
This commonplace bed with everyday sheets, its rumples and creases caused by the nightmare disturbances, forms a tableau of shadowy folds where by contrast time tries to recover us, in all senses.
Yet still this unmade double bed while you are away preserves outlines where your body lay, reminding me what lovers do in their proximity although I’m next to nothing now.
by Peter Robinson
Notes from Worple Press:
Peter Robinson was born in Salford, Lancashire, in 1953, and grew up mainly in Liverpool. His many volumes of poetry include a Selected Poems (2003), Ghost Characters (2006), and The Look of Goodbye (2008). He was awarded the Cheltenham Prize for This Other Life (1988). Both The Great Friend and Other Translated Poems (2002) and The Returning Sky (2012) were recommendations of the Poetry Book Society. A translator of poetry, mainly from the Italian, The Selected Poetry and Prose of Vittorio Sereni (with Marcus Perryman) appeared in 2006 and paperback in 2013. He received the John Florio Prize for The Greener Meadow: Selected Poems of Luciano Erba (2007) in 2008. Other publications include his aphorisms, Spirits of the Stair (2009), four volumes of literary criticism, the most recent being Poetry & Translation: The Art of the Impossible (2010), various edited collections and anthologies, such as The Complete Poems, Translations & Selected Prose of Bernard Spencer (2011) and The Oxford Handbook of Contemporary British and Irish Poetry (2013). A collection of essays on his work, The Salt Companion to Peter Robinson, edited by Adam Piette and Katy Price, appeared in 2007. The poetry editor for Two Rivers Press, he is Professor of English and American Literature, and currently Head of Department, at the University of Reading. You can read more about the book on Worple’s dedicated page, and visit Peter Robinson’s own website.
Worple Press was founded by Peter and Amanda Carpenter in 1997. Since then they have published a wide range of authors, including Iain Sinclair, Joseph Woods, Elizabeth Cook, Beverley Bie Brahic, Clive Wilmer and Kevin Jackson. They published the selected poems of the acclaimed American nature poet Peter Kane Dufault for the first time in the UK (Looking in All Directions); this was followed in 2007 by Kane Dufault’s To be in the same world. Peter Robinson’s The Great Friend and Other Translated Poems was the Poetry Book Society Recommended Translation for Spring 2002. This impressive backlist was augmented in 2012 by three significant titles: Passio: Fourteen Poems by Janos Pilinszky from Clive Wilmer and George Gomori; Riddance by Anthony Wilson; and the republication of William Hayward’s cult novel from 1964, It Never Gets Dark All Night. Over 2013 and 2014 new titles have included work from John Greening, Michael McKimm, Peter Robinson, Mary Woodward and Sally Flint. More information can be found on Worple Press’s website, Facebook page, and Twitter feed, and you can sign up for Worple’s mailing list by e-mailing: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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