Read online [ Edgelands Journeys into England's True Wilderness ebook ] ☆ Paul Farley

  • Hardcover
  • 256
  • Edgelands Journeys into England's True Wilderness
  • Paul Farley
  • English
  • 05 May 2018
  • 9780224089029

Paul Farley ¸ 6 review

Edgelands Journeys into England's True Wilderness free read â 106 Railways motorways wasteland and water a presence in the world and a strange beauty all of their ownPaul Farley and Michael Symmons Roberts both well known poets have lived and worked and known these places all their lives and in Edgelands their journeying prose fuses in the anonymous tradition to allow this in between world to speak up for itself They write about mobile masts and gravel pits business parks and landfill. Paul Farley and Michael Symmons Roberts introduce us to a part of our world that we had long forgotten even existedThis unlikely addition to my bookshelf was recommended to me by someone who has since gone off on travels to Shangri La in a hot air balloon but when they return I shall be sure to express my unending gratitude for their counsel Edgelands is a series of journeys into the parts of England s wilderness that we are all accustomed to either ignoring or looking past Neither the town nor country but spaces where urban and rural negotiate and renegotiate their borders They can be places that we don t want to see like power stations sewage works or landfill sites places of former industrialisation that are now sites of intense retail competition for weekend shoppers or even simply undeveloped wastelandThe authors who visit many different edgeland areas draw on history to explore what has happened to these places and then explore what they are used for now even reminiscing about their own childhood memories which uite often has the effect of bringing memories of your own flooding back You ll find yourself not only picturing the scene they re describing but also trying to remember a place from your own past that says the same thing They give us an insight into the changing nature of England s towns and show how the edgelands have even within their own lifetimes transformed moved even been occupied by the diverse wildlifeBoth authors are accomplished poets themselves and also draw on the poetry of others as well as art and literature to try and shine a spotlight on what they believe is the beauty of the edgelands both the natural and the not so natural They achieve their goal with resounding success now I can t even take a train ride or a bus out of town without gazing out of the window at the edgelands of the north east and wondering just the same things that Farley and Roberts do in this bookWith each chapter devoted to a different subject many of which are inextricably linked the book is not a linear journey from the first page to the last it is not chapter after chapter of simply describing particular places either there is also much of their explorations in the process of writing the book Documenting visits to the many places they write about an outlet village the Birmingham NEC a pallet yard A book Yes a book about the edgelands The what Pallets It s about pallets Edgelands is a wonderful insight into long forgotten about places It will give you a greater appreciation for the things you never notice But most importantly it s just a fascinating and enjoyable book to read

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Edgelands Journeys into England's True Wilderness free read â 106 Edgelands explores a wilderness that is much closer than you think a debatable zone neither the city nor the countryside but a place in between so familiar it is never seen for looking Passed through negotiated unnamed ignored the edgelands have become the great wild places on our doorsteps places so difficult to acknowledge they barely exist Edgelands forms a critiue of what we value as 'wild' and allows our allotments. Personal explorations and childhood recollections by the authors united into one voice plus a good trawl of references to writings art and photography informed by those edgelands which border the city proper and the countryside seen only as edges if as usually simply travelled through but as territories in their own right when imaginatively visited At the uarter way through point this is enjoyable and easy to read succinctly chaptered into subjects eg Dens Containers Paths and each chapter chunked into paragraphs with spaces so as not to wear out the typical modern reader Both authors are poets the blurb refers to them as well known poets a phrase which is a crime against literacy since if they are well known it seems insulting to both them and the reader to assert the fact As poets they point out that poetry often deals with the mundane and overlooked which they do here and too they have some witty images and asides which possibly signifies some modern poetry How one may long however for a writer to realise that in dealing with liminal issues a liminal discourse a refreshment is reuired rather than a tarted up trudge through familiar banality To be fair the method of working is to snapshot as image beyond concept concept abstracted from image and metonym a particular scene and move on uickly to thereby evoke a running contrast between looking and seeing between fast time and slow time plus for those of us who still wander wastelands and edgelands literally and through the places of the mind there is the delight of recognition for those of us whose childhoods were spent in these places there is a deeper delight Perhaps a way of expressing the book s method analogically is suggested in the authors discussion of artist Edward Chell and his paintings of motorway verges He has described the powerful visual metaphor of the verge as poised between the ordered policed and restricted boundary spaces of the state that we are only allowed to look at travelling at great speed and the slower uncontrollable energies of nature His images suggest our perception in flux the way seen at speed the intricacies of grassland and vegetation shift in and out of focus as our relation to the incident light changes Because Chell is interested in vision how we look at or don t look at what lies all around us His paintings concentrate our gaze on what s usually fleeting and reduced to blurred texture at the same time their stillness seems to contain speed and its shifting effects of lightClearly there is a central focus upon what for brevity s sake nay be termed the ideology of land and landscape the borders and powers of governments and private power and the acts of subversion represented by edgelands and the human activity that takes place there Also there is in the thesis itself a radical uestioning of the conservative gardening of beauty and order and thence an interrogation of the ideology of aesthetics and an obliue suggestion of the tawdriness of beauty on the one hand and the beauty of ugliness on anotherSome of the laddish wit irritates imagery seems clever and abstract by and large rather than fleshed out as one would indeed hope from poets Perhaps the better reflections and refractions are conceptual rather than poetic A discussion of an evolutionary term progressive detachment for instance is offered as a beautiful poetic idea yet it may be better formulated as sharing the beauty of mathematics In science the authors state metaphors change in an attempt to be faithful to the evidence presumably an analogy is being suggested by which new imagery needs to be found to express new discoveries such as the edgelands As I ve said the whole discourse of this book and the imagery in particular is pretty much off the shelf and lacks a fresh approachPossibly some sort of category error has been made firstly by trying to catalogue edgelands into discrete categories secondly by identifying them too closely with their physical location One would have thought that by nature edgelands are not subject to classification and territory and hence the reuirement of a adventurous mode of expression Strangely unpeopled except by monolithic categories of types eg families en route to Benidorm or Ibiza at airports the authors share that peculiar modern sensitivity to what they perceive as any charge of misanthropy early on they dismiss attempts to dismiss edgelands in favour of transcendental trips to the Highlands or as evidencing edgelands as showing the mess we have made of the planet as shortcuts to misanthropy The edgelands in this book have a ghostly uality that I am sure unintentionally leaves out the human and exploits a detritus of attributes dislocated and disconnectedAll landscapes are imaginary cities are imaginary As the writers say we can concentrate on the local the immediate and devote our attention to a few suare feet of earth And rather than having to find edgelands in the obvious geographical border between town and country we can see them wherever we are wherever there is human activity There are many strata of populations in all our cities and the demographic metaphor is apt We live in edgelands whoever wherever we are

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Edgelands Journeys into England's True Wilderness free read â 106 Sites in the same way the Romantic writers forged a way of looking at an overlooked but now familiar landscape of hills and lakes and rivers England the first country to industrialise now offers the world's most mature post industrial terrain and is still in a state of flux Edgelands takes the reader on a journey through its forgotten spaces so that we can marvel at this richly mysterious cheek by jowl region in our mids. Though I was at times slightly frustrated by the uncertainty of this never was edgeland convincingly defined for me it seemed to just mean anything town or country that the authors wanted to define as such and though it did wander off into pretentiousness at times I did enjoy thisThe co authors discuss various aspects of the British landscape focussing on boundaries and hinterlands Allotments canals dumps wastelands retail parks and many it s a curiously put together mixture of poetry academic review and diverse discussion that worked best when it was being generic though I did get added pleasure from some of the West Midlands sections I was familiar with At times it took itself too seriously I felt and there did seem to be sweeping statements early on which failed to convince me but most of it was good There were parts which I really enjoyed parts which I felt myself gloss over and barely take in but overall it was a pleasant and interesting read