The Letter

He stooped to assess
The scrap of paper drenched with
Rain and dried by wind,

An ending: ‘One can
Love anything, so how much
Better it was you.’


While they all went off
To France and to Italy
She stayed on the moon,

Ankled in white dust,
Walking down the craters and
Sleeping by earth light.


Shakespeare looked in the
Glass and saw a seller of
Gloves, so moved to where

All men act what they
Are, or are not, or might be:
But the words are true.


He was grateful for
The illusions that held him
Steady all his life

As a cage with straw
Keeps an animal breathing
Through the long winter.


I like, she said in
Passing, to evoke turmoil,
And what could be more

Evocative than
This? – with which she stepped over
The near parapet.


During the bad time
He found he was reading to
Get the book finished

Each book he opened
Was either alien or
Simply too well known.

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