In the latest issue:

An Ordinary Woman

Alan Bennett

Anglo-America Loses its Grip

Pankaj Mishra

Short Cuts: John Bolton’s Unwitting Usefulness

Mattathias Schwartz

Smells of Hell

Keith Thomas

Mrs Oliphant

Tom Crewe

Tippett’s Knack

Philip Clark

At Tate Modern: Steve McQueen

Colin Grant

Catherine Lacey

Nicole Flattery

Churchill’s Cook

Rosemary Hill

The ‘Batrachomyomachia’

Ange Mlinko

On Dorothea Lange

Joanna Biggs

Paid to Race

Jon Day

Poem: ‘Traveller’s Tales: Chapter 90’

August Kleinzahler

The Soho Alphabet

Andrew O’Hagan

Old Tunes

Stephen Sedley

Victor Serge’s Defective Bolshevism

Tariq Ali

The Murdrous Machiavel

Erin Maglaque

Diary: Insane after coronavirus?

Patricia Lockwood


The slightest words define the most.
Am, for instance, filling up a life,
Expressing, if expression is compelled,
The body’s territorial extent;
Assertion’s power to concentrate
A colony of egos in
Their dusty settlements of skin.
Denials, deprecations, steppings down,
Apologies like mornings, wry with mist,
Assumptions of uniqueness, leaky dawns,
Fluorescent, repetitious afternoons,
And fragile nights with sprays of stars,
Each chip and bit, each lucid smithereen,
A glimpse inside what might have been,
A looking-glass of overripe
And tinily declarative
Speckled with defections and
Disfigured with this spreading black
That takes each thinning drift of breath
And will not give it back.

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