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

Fernando LoboAnthony Thwaite

My dark Brazilian friend, seventy years back
In Washington. Both of us were foreign,
On the edge of Gordon Junior High.
After my English prep-school shine wore off,
My grades slid down and I lost interest
In most things, except stamps and snakes and sex.
We visited the embassies, cadging stamps,
And messed about off Massachusetts Avenue
Playing the hub-cap trick on passing cars
(You threw one into the road and shouted ‘Hub-cap!’
And the car screeched to a halt.)
                                                  All this was idle,
The sort of stuff 13-year-olds get up to.
But you, somehow, made it all different,
A different way of foreignness, a mask
To wear until a real face appeared,
And I went home to England, and the war
Ended, and I forgot Fernando Lobo
Until last night I dreamed of your dark smile,
Conspiratorial, and foreign, just like me.

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.

Read More

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