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

Close
Close

The woman who’s dying is trying to lose her life.
It’s a great adventure
For everyone trying to help her.
Actually, death avoids her, doesn’t want to hurt her.

So to speak, opens her hand and gently takes away the knife
Everyone well-meaning wants her to use on herself.
There is no knife, of course.
And she’s too weak.

If you’re too ill, the clinic near Zurich that helps
People leave this world won’t.
If you’re that medicated and out of it and desperate,
You may not be thinking right about wanting to end your life.

If you’re near death, you may be too near
For the clinic to help you over the barrier.
She weakly screams she wants to die.
Hard to believe her pain is beyond the reach of drugs.

Please die. Please do. Her daughters don’t want her to die and do.
The world of dew is a world of dew and yet
What airline will fly someone this sick?
They can afford a hospital plane but

Can she still swallow? The famous barbiturate cocktail
The clinic is licensed to administer isn’t the Fountain of Youth.
But what if she gets there and drinks it and it only makes her ill?
And she vomits. It’s unreal.

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