In the latest issue:

The American Virus

Eliot Weinberger

The Home Life of Inspector Maigret

John Lanchester

Story: ‘Have a Seat in the Big Black Chair’

Diane Williams

The Last Whale

Colin Burrow

In Beijing

Long Ling

Princess Margaret and Lady Anne

Rosemary Hill

At the Movies: ‘Arkansas’

Michael Wood

Ruin it your own way

Susan Pedersen

At Home

Jane Miller

The Ottoman Conundrum

Helen Pfeifer

Poem: ‘Muntjac’

Blake Morrison

Piketty’s Revolution

Geoff Mann

Short Cuts: In Tripoli

Jérôme Tubiana

Coetzee Makes a Leap

Christopher Tayler

At Auckland Castle: Francisco de Zurbarán

Nicola Jennings

Drain the Swamps

Steven Shapin

Diary: In the Isolation Room

Nicholas Spice

Close
Close

Instruction

Were you surprised to learn
that you could swap
an ‘i’ for an eye,
and ‘a’ for an apple?

That’s the lure.

Later, you may
want to pray.

*

You may be left
to think your way
from moment to moment

without being told
what a moment is,

if it’s something solid.

*

The mad hear language
speak itself
and are humble before it.

They receive instruction.

*

The child in her crib
turns her head restlessly,
says, ‘aaah, aaah’
like an engine left running.

Ceremonial

They change arsenate
to arsenite
and back. They
pant.

*

To capitulate
is to give in;

to recapitulate
is to repeat
in brief.

*

Fuchsia shadow;
dangling beads.

This
is my
body,

          which

*

They pass one
atom
between them:

‘Take and eat.’

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