The Map of Love (1939)

The Map of Love, a collection of poetry and prose, was published on 24 August 1939, but the book’s reception was completely overshadowed by the build up to war.

It received mixed reviews, but won praise from Herbert Read who wrote in Seven: “It is mainly a poetry of the elemental physical experience: birth, copulation, death …. A unique book … It contains the most absolute poetry that has ever been written in our time, and one can only pray that this poet will not be forced in any way to surrender the subtle course of his genius.” The poems are published in the Collected Poems, and the stories in Collected Stories.


  • Because the pleasure-bird whistles
  • I make this in a warring absence
  • When all my five and country senses
  • We lying by seasand
  • It is the sinners’ dust-tongued bell
  • make me a mask
  • The spire cranes
  • After the funeral
  • Once it was the colour of saying
  • Not from this anger
  • How shall my animal
  • The tombstone told
  • On no work of words
  • A saint about to fall
  • If my head hurt a hair’s foot
  • Twenty-four years


  • The Tree
  • The Enemies
  • The Dress
  • The Visitor
  • The Orchards
  • The Mouse and the Woman
  • The Map of Love

This post is also available in: Welsh