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

Nicotine

The filter crumples – a cruel exhilaration
as the day’s first cigarette draws to a close.
The optician’s colours turn to a dizzy whiteness
in my solar plexus ... With longing I speculate
on Heimito von Doderer’s excursus on tobacco –
the pharmaceutical precision of the true scholar.

Diablerie

Your ringed hands clutch your elbows. In your arms
is someone else’s child, a black-eyed baby girl
dressed like His Satanic Majesty in a red romper suit:
a gleeful crustacean, executing pincer movements.

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