Fiction | A Jest of Nature by Karen Whiteson

Karen WhitesonA Jest of Nature I was lolling in a pile of dead leaves when I heard the cries of woodcutters spread out around me. They were calling out ‘Ho’ to each other, to link their widening circle. As they closed in, their cries softened into a chant. I withdrew into a blackberry bush and, from its thorny depths, I...

Interview | Camille Emmanuelle

Erik MartinyAn Interview with Camille Emmanuelle Camille Emmanuelle is a journalist, author and editor. Her book Sexpowerment was published to widespread acclaim in 2016. She has also written Le Goût du baiser (The Taste of the Kiss), a teen fiction novel on the subject of adolescent sexual encounters and most recently Ricochets, a book that focuses on the notion of...

Fiction | What Remained by Morgan Omotoye

We are delighted to present a new, previously unpublished short story from Morgan Omotoye, author of the recently published novelette Here is Where (Open Pen, 2021). Go here to order a copy of Here is Where directly from the publisher.Morgan OmotoyeWhat Remained Conrad’s laptop had given up the ghost. Dark wavy lines swam across the screen like determined, slow moving...

Essay | Poetry and Film in Colombia by Charles Olsen

Charles OlsenPoetry and Film in Colombia A New Zealander drawn to Colombian poetry films? Having interviewed filmmakers of Spain and Portugal for the book The Poetics of Poetry Film (Sarah Tremlett (Ed), Intellect Books, 2021), I recently became interested in what was happening in the country of my partner, the poet Lilián Pallares from Barranquilla. I began trawling international poetry...

Fiction | Pleased to Meet You, Pablo Escobar by J. J. Junieles (trans. Ellen Jones)

J. J. Junieles (trans. Ellen Jones)Pleased to Meet You, Pablo Escobar I still remember that day, walking along Calle Séptima with Mariela. We heard a commotion in the street, followed a group of people into a café with a television, and discovered the reason for all the noise: a news anchor was explaining that Pablo Escobar had been killed. In...

Essay | Painting the Rainforest by Damian Elwes

Damian ElwesPainting the Rainforest The themes in Amazon Cloud Forest (1998) seem to be more relevant with each year that passes. When I made this artwork, I was thinking about human vulnerability in the face of climate change, deforestation and other man-made disasters. .……..The painting describes a major source of the Amazon River, which exists in a cloud forest on a...

Poetry | Three Poems by Tania Ganitsky (trans. Rosalind Harvey)

Tania Ganitsky (trans. Rosalind Harvey)Three Poems The first poem of the year tells of what I will touch: the unbudded leaves of the begonia, someone’s body as they dream, in a distant body, of images that to date they have not seen and which to date do not exist; the wet tongue of a dog that will wake me in the mornings, the blistering logs I...

Essay | Gabo Speaks by Jaime Abello Banfi and Orlando Oliveros (trans. Fionn Petch)

Jaime Abello Banfi and Orlando Oliveros (trans. Fionn Petch)Gabo Speaks Gabriel García Márquez died in 2014 and it is already four decades since he won the Nobel Prize for Literature, but he remains present in the everyday lives of Colombians, remembered in countless ways as a national hero, popular icon and cultural cliché. His smiling face appears on the 50,000...

Poetry | On the Way Back by Alfredo Vanín Romero (trans. Robin Myers)

Alfredo Vanín Romero (trans. Robin Myers)On the Way Back We traced the path in our bodies. It seemed to lead nowhere, but the hope endures of finding another curve in the shore, even among the salt vomited by the crabs that puncture the boots the old imp lent us.The women say their breasts’ tattoos are spent. The men march in...

Fiction | Unmoored by Rajiv Ramkhalawan

Rajiv RamkhalawanUnmoored .……..You are headed to Trinidad for Carnival. .……..In the lead up to your flight, the island of your birth consumes you, maddens you in the way a lost soul forages a burial ground for its own body, but never quite finds it. You are like that lost soul, trapped between the past and the present. Longing for something that...

Fiction | Christmas Fire by Ferdinand Dennis

The following story is reproduced with permission from The Black and White Museum, a new collection of short stories by Ferdinand Dennis to be published on 2 December by HopeRoad, who last year republished Dennis's 1998 novel Duppy Conqueror. A copy of the new collection can be ordered directly from the publisher here. Ferdinand DennisChristmas Fire Christmas was approaching and London...

Essay | The Art of Lost Sleep by Venetia Welby

The following essay is reproduced with permission from the anthology Trauma - An anthology of writing about art and mental health (Dodo Ink, 2021, edited by Sam Mills & Thom Cuell). Alongside this essay, the book contains work from Monique Roffey, Alex Pheby, David Lynch, Kirsty Logan & many others. You can buy the book directly from the publisher...

Fiction | Brickmakers by Selva Almada tr. Annie McDermott [Extract]

We are pleased to bring you an extract from the novel Brickmakers by Selva Almada, translated by Annie McDermott, and published by Charco Press — an Edinburgh-based press that seeks to publish English language translations of the very best of contemporary Latin American literature. Buy the book directly from the publisher here.  Pájaro Tamai and Marciano Miranda, two young men, are...

Review | A Fish in the Stream by Katie da Cunha Lewin

Katie da Cunha LewinA Fish in the Stream The Years, Annie Ernaux, Fitzcarraldo Editions, 2018, 240pp, £12.99 (paperback)Happening, Annie Ernaux, Fitzcarraldo Editions, 2019, 96pp, £8.99 (paperback) What does it mean to make your life the subject of your writing? For French writer Annie Ernaux, this is a complex question that goes well beyond simple narration, plot or emotional truth, but to...

Poetry | Hyperlove by Naomi Morris

Naomi MorrisHyperlove The two pieces below are reproduced with permission from the closing stages of Hyperlove by Naomi Morris (Makina Books, September 2021). Hyperlove burns with frustration and fervour as Morris explores heteronormative ideals, romantic happily-ever-afters and the historical oppression of women and their right to agency and expression. Yet Hyperlove isn’t constrained to a sense of personal storytelling. In...

Extract | Ricochets by Camille Emmanuelle tr. Nick Haughton

The text below is a translated extract from Ricochets by Camille Emmanuelle. Ricochets opens on 7 January 2015, as Camille accompanies her husband Luz—cartoonist for Charlie Hebdo—to his first psychiatric appointment following the terrorist attacks that took place earlier that day. In this book, Camille Emmanuelle conducts both a personal and journalistic investigation into an under-appreciated domain of post-traumatic stress, something...

Fiction | Mapping Chillies by Suey Kweon

Suey KweonMapping Chillies My mother used to lay out her chillies to dry from around August time each year on the pavements that lined the tower blocks of apartments. The best real estate was naturally the concrete road which was dark and absorbed the hard sun most robustly, but it was hard to find enough of this space where cars...

Poetry | Joan Brossa | Six Poems (El saltamartí)

Joan BrossaEl saltamartí / The Tumbler Joan Brossa creates distilled excitement. He is both wise and wild. His poems are surreal and matter-of-fact, playful and minimalist and utterly original. In his ability to make it new, Brossa is an essential modern poet.         — Colm Tóibín Following the publication of the first release from Tenement Press—a new publisher formed by...

Interview | ‘Women are Expected to Tell Their Personal Story all the Time’: In Conversation with Eimear McBride

'Women are Expected to Tell Their Personal Story all the Time': In Conversation with Eimear McBride   Promoting and showcasing Irish writing has become an increasingly important part of the cultural programme at the Irish Cultural Centre. From 15-17 October the centre launched its inaugural ICC Literary Festival, welcoming an exceptional line-up of successful Irish writers, including Colm Tóibín, Eimear  McBride, Dermot Bolger...

Review | The Water We Were All Swimming In by Katie da Cunha Lewin

Katie da Cunha LewinThe Water We Were All Swimming In The Inland Sea, Madeleine Watts, Pushkin Press, 2021, 256pp, £8.99 (paperback) The Weak Spot, Lucie Elven, Prototype, 2021, 176pp, £12.00 (paperback) In a conversation in Granta magazine with Lucie Elven, Madeleine Watts observes that ‘Young women are used as vessels for a lot of cultural baggage, and encountering that baggage growing up...

Essay | Royal Families by Simon Okotie

Simon OkotieRoyal Families   The death of Ikenwoli Godfrey Emiko – the King (or Olu) of Warri – was announced in the same week as that of Prince Philip. Established in the fifteenth century by the Itsekiris, an ethnic group in the Niger Delta area of modern-day Nigeria, the realm is an offshoot of the Kingdom of Benin. Rumours had been...

Interview | Ted Hodgkinson on the London Literature Festival

Ted Hodgkinson on the London Literature Festival This year, the London Literature Festival (Southbank Centre, 21-31 October) is drawing inspiration from Sally Rooney’s debut novel, Conversations with Friends, to dive into the joy and meaning friendship brings to our lives, as well as the challenges of maintaining our closest relationships.  Leading authors, scientists, comedians and artists will explore the many dimensions of...

Review | The Dante Project: Trailblazing a Path to Paradise

Trailblazing a Path to Paradise The Dante Project, The Royal Opera House, 14-30 October 2021 Wayne McGregor has never been shy in taking on literary greats. In 2015, the no-holds-barred resident choreographer of the Royal Ballet, premiered Woolf Works, a three-act ballet based on the works of Virginia Woolf (Mrs Dalloway, Orlando and The Waves). His fearlessly abstract approach ruffled traditionalist...

Fiction | Jennifer by Luke Lewin Davies

Luke Lewin DaviesJennifer Jennifer watched the ending of the film, with the man we had been told to hate surprising everyone by saving the child. This followed by the sequence of trees shooting past a train window. Its language had been clear to her. She hadn’t enjoyed the film that much – but the message was plain: to hate the man...

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