First Person

Double Vision

Behind Iceland Spar, John Greening’s eleventh collection of poems, lies one wartime narrative and one remarkable mineral. In addition, I must own to a particular, almost jealous interest in the parallel between Greening’s relationship with Iceland and my own, such that, in what follows I will both review his book and write myself into the story it tells. The wartime narrative records how Greening’s father enlisted in the RAF in 1941, then served as a wireless operator in Iceland, principally in the northern town of Akureyri. Though scarcely out of his teens, W/Op Greening was already engaged to a girl…

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