The Old Days

Remember when everyone on earth
was pregnant except for you
which was a miracle

and the babies jangled down on their cords
like oxygen masks during unplanned
cabin decompression

and all language was lost to the cutesy voice.
Woo are so wucky, everyone explained
while you adopted

the brace position, amazed at the serenity
that comes from looking after


As a privilege
of my nearly hairless body
I invite ancient men to my bed.

We sleep top-tails
but sometimes spoons.
I make them keep their World War I coats on.

They whisper
about camp latrines, executions
at dawn, the smell beneath their bandages.

They only perk up
when I interpret their dreams
which are always fiendishly literal.

Send Letters To:

The Editor
London Review of Books,
28 Little Russell Street
London, WC1A 2HN

Please include name, address, and a telephone number.

Read anywhere with the London Review of Books app, available now from the App Store for Apple devices, Google Play for Android devices and Amazon for your Kindle Fire.

Sign up to our newsletter

For highlights from the latest issue, our archive and the blog, as well as news, events and exclusive promotions.

Newsletter Preferences