In the latest issue:

Boris Johnson’s First Year

Ferdinand Mount

Short Cuts: In the Bunker

Thomas Jones

Theban Power

James Romm

What can the WHO do?

James Meek

At the Type Archive

Alice Spawls

Where the Poor Lived

Alison Light

At the Movies: ‘Da 5 Bloods’

Michael Wood

Cultural Pillaging

Neal Ascherson

Jenny Offill

Adam Mars-Jones

Shakespeare v. the English

Michael Dobson

Poem: ‘Now Is the Cool of the Day’

Maureen N. McLane

Tativille

David Trotter

Consider the Hare

Katherine Rundell

How Should I Refer to You?

Amia Srinivasan

Poem: ‘Field Crickets (Gryllus campestris)’

Fiona Benson

Diary: In Mali

Rahmane Idrissa

Under the SkyRobert VanderMolen
Close
Close

How it was, after the babies,
One week’s vacation at the shore
During late July, trying to isolate
A hummock of time in which to be dazed,
Beer in the mug, the slant of sunsets,
Fried chicken seasoned with sand.
All of us thinner, sweat-dried, more prone
To anger. With a housecat prowling
Through dune grass . . .

And they made a film of it. I’ve forgotten
The name of the one who played me.
Someone with more hair on his body.
My wife was shorter with a robust bosom.
While a character died reluctantly
Snatched by a rip in the current
And roiled beyond the sandbar
(where brown trout lurked like torpedoes),
Bubbles becoming foam.
We used to joke about monstrous sturgeon
Fish that would slip into shallows
To suck up infants . . .

Eventually we scattered:
Through divorces, disreputable habits,
Windfalls and death.
The actors disappeared too –
Unlike us, they played in the last Westerns,
Never left Montana
After they were cashiered.
Plains rising into a wall of mountains.
I’ve often considered driving west
After steaming across on the ferry . . .

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