In the latest issue:

In Quarantine

Erin Maglaque

Après Brexit

Ferdinand Mount

Short Cuts: Springtime for Donald

David Bromwich

Meetings with their Gods

Claire Hall

‘Generation Left’

William Davies

At the North Miami Museum: Alice Paalen Rahon

Mary Ann Caws

Buchan’s Banter

Christopher Tayler

‘American Dirt’

Christian Lorentzen

Fiction and the Age of Lies

Colin Burrow

In Lahore

Tariq Ali

GOD HATES YOUR FEELINGS

James Lasdun

Rereading Bowen

Tessa Hadley

At the Corner House

Rosemary Hill

William Gibson

Thomas Jones

Poem: ‘Murph & Me’

August Kleinzahler

The Stud File

Kevin Brazil

John Boorman’s Quiet Ending

David Thomson

In Shanghai: The West Bund Museum

John-Paul Stonard

Diary: The Deborah Orr I Knew

Jenny Turner

Two PoemsTom Paulin
Close
Close

From that state of chassis
to those two poets
– both theorists of chaos
at Princeton
– a name that goes with Einstein
– from that apparently random state
almost void almost without form
though it doesn’t know it
we might just start
to draw drip or pour
a kind of crooked trickled line
– its grease
or toil of grace
could be glimpsed out on the Net
strong wide deep long
cunt and womb
a tough nut

– that grace’s chancy power
dancing out a pattern
isn’t simply the oul
woundup ticktock
and wire spectacles of the argument from design
its Godgiven architrave
but instead a fold in space
shaped a bit like a dhow
– not Noah’s ark
an Arab prow
that’s slanted on a rising wave
and made up of wind hailstones rubble shlock
whoop and whow
and a lost golfball
that rolls about this tinpot universe
which owes more to the genius
of Herr Professor Möbius
than we might guess
made up as it is of energy matter ’n
coul
infinite volumes of gas

Kingstown Saint Vincent

– piece of paper that’s been wet then dried
it’s a different texture – rougher
a bit like a voice from the other side
or the ricochet of a chough’s
cry or the way a voice might move
from lettuce to rocket
– still a green leaf but peppery tougher

I feel it folded in my pocket
and know it’s dull – dull and stained –
that I’ve written your address on it
and that more much much more is giving me pain
– just touching it is like finding a letter – a love
or a personal letter blowing down the street
so that it feels used dirty torn open
like a cross between a bus ticket’s
square of grey print and an unfinished sonnet

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