In the latest issue:

Loathed by Huysmans

Julian Barnes

Too early or too late?

David Runciman

Short Cuts: Five Victorian Marriages

Tom Crewe

Society as a Broadband Network

William Davies

Fifteen days from now

Thomas Jones

In 1348

James Meek

The Yorkists

John Guy

At the Movies: Pasolini’s ‘Teorema’

Michael Wood

Whitehall Spookery

Neal Ascherson

Poem: ‘The Bannisters’

Paul Muldoon

Clarice Lispector

Rivka Galchen

Marius Petipa

Simon Morrison

At the Foundling Museum: ‘Portraying Pregnancy’

Joanne O’Leary

Gordon v. O’Connor

Rupert Thomson

Revism

Joe Dunthorne

Poem: ‘The Reach of the Sea’

Maureen N. McLane

Diary: Where water used to be

Rosa Lyster

Close
Close

my sex

enter breakfast truck, the bluebottles
performing obsequies to marbled bacon

enter girl with manacles. enter
so damn adorable. he likes small fuckdoll.

girl who looks plaintively at porcelain
salt and pepper shakers shaped
like kittens sleeping, intertwined. enter
desolation beside a pinstripe spider-plant enter
knowing how to dress your pear-shape history
history, and after you follow, with a bucket
and a mop – or words to that effect.

enter girl who applies the cooling gel.
enter the Tate Modern to see Yayoi Kusama’s
I Am Here But Nothing which please you
cannot photograph like when
i found out there was a fetish for everything sexuality
seemed like a great leveller. enter nothing
too weird to enter, biking, amused savage
tender repetitions of toilet cubicle graffiti.

enter Fathers in the Clouds (’99)
enter my sex like act not gender and other songs
that make me cry my sex sometimes ballet shoes
both the stones in the pockets of my coat
and the welcoming cold river.

southern gothic

riding trains makes me think about death.
not mine, you understand,
but my father’s.

the specificity. sun scrapes along the half-spent cloud,
          union jacks sinuate on satellite dishes.

England –
and just enough blue sky
to make a noose.

i’ll walk around the two-bed with my attention turned
          to chores unfinished –
mow the lawn, throw my cigarette ends at the cat
who comes to shit in the daffodil patch.

walking through mourning days
of a nitrous quality

with the calm and self-possession
of a knife-carrier.

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