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The London Magazine has a publication history spanning almost two hundred years, and has featured work by some of the most prominent names in literature, from John Keats to Hilary Mantel. In this curated selection, we share our favourite pieces from the TLM archive.

Fiction | On His Own Ground by Vis Nathan

  First published in the December 1976/January 1977 of The London Magazine (Volume 16, No.5) Gopal entered his cubby-hole surrounded by huge racks bulging with musty...

Confessions of an English Opium Eater: An Essay by David Punter

Before its controversial and ground-breaking publication as a book in 1822, Thomas De Quincey's autobiographical account of opiate addiction Confessions of an English Opium...

Essay | Living in the Country— 1 by James Stern

I had the good fortune to live in the country until after I came of age. I could recognize and name most of the...

Essay | Living in London: Highgate by Jonathan Raban

Jonathan Raban is an award-winning writer, author of among many others, 1974's Soft City, an early classic of psychogeographical urban writing. In February 1970...

Archive | Why I Write — Joan Didion

First published in the June/July 1977 of The London Magazine (Vol. 17, No. 2)  Of course I stole the title from George Orwell. One reason...

Archive | Poetry | Rin Ishigaki

Known in Japan as the 'bank clerk poet', with her work frequently featuring in the bank newsletter where she was employed, Ishigaki's poetry stretches...

Poetry | Synopsis and The Wedding Frame by Hugo Williams

Synopsis People are taking sedatives in boats Going to America. Their names drift back to me— Hollowed out, unpronounceable. I walk through the crowds in the arcades And on the...

Archive | Notes on Raymond Chandler — Ian Fleming

With the protagonists of their respective novels being so similar, it is perhaps little surprise that the writers Ian Fleming and Raymond Chandler struck...

Two Wives and a Widow by Angela Carter

From The London Magazine March 1966 Two Wives and a Widow A modern version from the Middle Scots of William Dunbar If one night in the year...

Poetry | A Letter from Brooklyn by Derek Walcott

An old lady writes me in a spidery style, Each character trembling, and I see a veined hand Pellucid as paper, travelling on a skein Of such...

The Mother of the Child in Question by Doris Lessing

When Doris Lessing was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2007 she was the eleventh woman and the oldest person to ever receive...

Ghost Story by J.G. Warry

For close on forty years I have pursued The ghost of my personality Down endless corridors of a castle Unsuccessfully. If I could catch him, I wonder, By the...

Archive | Breakfast with Borges by Andrew Graham-Yooll

First published in The London Magazine March 1983, Vol.22, No.12 Jorge Luis Borges entered the Pedmonte Restaurant on Avenida de Mayo with the stiff steps of the...

Two more from ‘Mother Goose’ by Bernard Gutteridge

Two fairytale poems from 'Mother Goose' by Bernard Gutteridge with a little twist, first published in The London Magazine in 1971. THE STEPMOTHER She is like...

Poetry | Poem by Kyriakos Frangoulis

The moon is a sealed coffin A boast The moon of poets The moon of dogs The moon of ovaries The moon of astronauts The invisible moon Knived Sick Yellow Waning Moon-wreath of everyday Moon of...

Till September Petronella by Jean Rhys

From The London Magazine January 1960 There was a barrel organ playing at the corner of Torrington Square. It played 'Destiny' and ‘La Paloma’ and...

Essay | The Bazooka Girl — A Note On Anna Kavan...

The following piece is taken from The London Magazine, February 1970. It was written by Rhys Davies, a close friend of Anna Kavan's, and...

Archive | Pier Paolo Pasolini — Divina Mimesis: Canto VII

Pier Paolo Pasolini was an Italian poet, novelist and film-maker, who died in mysterious circumstances in 1975 in an as-yet-unsolved murder case. Hailed by...

Review | Promising Young Women by Caroline O’Donoghue

This year has truly brought to the fiction scene some of the most stunning and powerful female characters. From the extreme – such as My...

Archive | Review | Evelyn Waugh on Don’t Tell Alfred by...

While looking through our archive recently we came across this review by Evelyn Waugh of Nancy Mitford's novel Don't Tell Alfred from 1960. Displaying...

Home by Kate Miller

Even a London house must have its swifts, the roof should be a beacon in the western light to guide them. Now, at evening, midges rise in...

Cathedral by Raymond Carver

The first story written after his acclaimed collection What We Talk About When We Talk About Love, 'Cathedral' by Raymond Carver was included in...

Fiction | A Third Presence by Nadine Gordimer

When Rose and Naomi, daughters of poor Rasovsky the tailor, left school in the same year there was no discussion about what they should...

Archive | Memories of Modigliani by Anna Akhmatova

First published in the August 1964 edition of the London Magazine (Vol. 4 No.5) (translated from the Italian text by Bernard Wall) I can well believe...

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