Archive | From Notebook by Robert Lowell

Robert LowellFrom Notebook  The following piece by American poet Robert Lowell was first published in the November 1970 issue of The London Magazine, edited by Alan Ross. A hugely influential figure in American poetry, Lowell's Life Studies won the National Book Award in 1960. He was also the recipient of the Pulizter Prize for Poetry in 1947 and 1974.1970 NEW...

Interview | Edin Zenun

Eric BlockEdin Zenun  Lullaby for Realville is the first solo exhibition in London by Vienna-based arist, Edin Zenun, and runs from 15 July to 15 August 2022. Zenun paintings inspect composition, interactions between form and color and explore a range of materials including clay and oil. The title of this show comes from a song by the American Jazz composer and...

Fiction | Just Passing by Miranda Gold

Miranda GoldJust Passing  Alf’s train was due in just before six. Caroline’s last message to him was a list of identifying clues: red scarf, black beany… Nothing back. She scanned the boards, tried to pick out likely faces from the stream of commuters pouring past her. The best she could hope for was that the uncle she hadn’t seen since...

Essay | David Berman and My Stalker by Rowena Macdonald

Rowena MacdonaldDavid Berman and My Stalker  David Berman killed himself on 7 August 2019, aged 52. Since his death the world has already changed drastically. I wonder what he would have made of the pandemic. He might have enjoyed the time and space to write during the lockdowns, although in his last years it sounded like maybe he had...

Poetry | Missing Europe by Greta Bellamacina

Greta BellamacinaMissing Europe  I made up our bed, a clean wedding thought I would find you in it. Thought we had the same eroding mouths when you swallowed my language I didn’t care because the secrets of my past were yours too and I counted how many women I could be.I felt lighter than all the metal flags between us the ones that made up...

Review | Demon Daze: Kawanabe Kyōsai by James Riding

James RidingDemon Daze: Kawanabe Kyōsai  It was a British artist named Mortimer Menpes who gave us the most terrifying portrait of Japan’s ‘demon painter’. In 1887, Menpes was at a private party in Tokyo, where thirteen of the city’s finest artists had been invited to paint in front of distinguished international guests. Among the artists was Kawanabe Kyōsai, a painter...

Archive | Berck-Plage by Sylvia Plath

Sylvia PlathBerck-Plage   Sylvia Plath's poem 'Berck-Plage' appears in the June 1963 edition of The London Magazine, edited by Alan Ross. Born in 1932, Sylvia Plath was an American novelist and poet best known for her novel The Bell Jar and collections The Colossus and Other Poems and Ariel. She died in 1963. The Collected Poems were published in 1981, for which...

Review | The Meaning of Sex by Stuart Walton

Stuart WaltonThe Meaning of Sex Sad Love: Romance and the Search for Meaning, Carrie Jenkins, Polity, pp.200, 2022, £14.99 The Case Against the Sexual Revolution, Louise Perry, pp.200, 2022, £14.99There has never been a time in history when love and sex, their conduct and protocols, were as extensively theorised and politicised as they are now. To be sure, erotic relations have...

Fiction | A Sultry Month by Alethea Hayter [Extract]

Alethea HayterA Sultry Month: Scenes of London Literary Life in 1846  The following extract is reproduced with permission from Alethea Hayter's A Sultry Month: Scenes of London Literary Life in 1846. A ground-breaking contribution to non-fiction set in 1846, A Sultry Month documents the most influential artists and writers of the time, from Wordsworth and Dickens, to Robert Browning and...

Podcast | Nell Stevens

PodcastNell Stevens   We spoke to writer Nell Stevens about her new short story in our June/July issue, 'Pulse', the release of her debut novel, 'Briefly, A Delicious Life' and judging our Short Story Prize 2022. Listen to hear Nell's best tips on writing while juggling work and family time, Chopin's music and teenage ghosts! Enter our Short Story Prize 2022 here: https://bit.ly/3R74mUW To read...

Interview | Lubna Chowdhary

Eric BlockLubna Chowdhary  This summer sees a major solo exhibition of the work of Lubna Chowdhary take place at Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art (MIMA). Her 35 year career has seen significant public art commissions and this is her largest large-scale museum exhibition, and includes two new large-scale site specific works. Ahead of its opening on 25 June, we sat...

Poetry | Two Poems by Andrew Wells

Andrew WellsTwo Poemsgoldfish poemeach corner laid bare like – see all corners laid before me – of what/ of the great big blue / what kind of I am readjusting to an interface of tidesif I compared satellites to peonies, would you still –all corners laid or left ajar like bright devices – I am sorry to mull notions of irregular lungs, surprisingly shallow images in all corners of the...

Non-fiction | The Pembridge Poets by Chris Rice

Chris RiceThe Pembridge Poets   On 17th June 1976, Robert Greacen (56, Northern Irish poet), hosted the first of his poetry workshops from his flat in Pembridge Crescent, Notting Hill Gate. Also present at the first meeting were: Peter Rodda (39, South African writer and activist), Tim Dooley (25, poet and English teacher), Matthew Sweeney (24, poet from Donegal), Gerald Clarke...

Poetry | Two Poems by Jasmine Gray

Jasmine GrayTwo Poems  decorativeyour vulnerability is that you are a joke you know you are a bruised peach you can pinpoint the date and time it all began you fear anyone who meets you now will know you want to slip inside cool water you will let him destroy you then wake up the next day and do his dishes you say okay and fine after saying...

Essay | William Blake at Calvary’s Foot and Sinai’s Cave by Niall McDevitt

Niall McDevittWilliam Blake at Calvary’s Foot and Sinai’s Cave William Blake never travelled to Jerusalem. Instead, two of his masterpieces twin Britain with Jerusalem. The preface to Milton, ‘Jerusalem’ the lyric, imagines Christ visiting England. His final epic Jerusalem the Emanation of the Giant Albion imagines a mystical relationship between a male Albion and female Jerusalem. Both long poems were illustrated and self-published at his...

Interview | Pierre Demarty

Erik MartinyPierre Demarty  Pierre Demarty is a French publisher, writer and translator. His first book was longlisted for the prestigious Médicis and Flore prizes. Erik Martiny speaks to him about his latest provocative novel Death to Giraffes. Your latest novel, Mort aux girafes (Death to Giraffes), is composed of one two-hundred-page sentence. What motivated you to embark on such a risk-laden...

Fiction | Play by Martha Sprackland

Martha SpracklandPlay   It was the third time he’d been into the school. Again he felt uncomfortable, vulnerable. Why, if not about power, were the parents met here, in the middle area, and gestured to sit in these tiny, blue plastic chairs, rather than in the Head’s office? Or at least the staff room. The intended effect, he supposed, might be...

Podcast | Jessie Greengrass

PodcastJessie Greengrass   We spoke to author Jessie Greengrass about her new story in our June/July 2022 issue, 'A Lone Astronaut Watches the World End', as well as her 2021 novel 'The High House'. We discuss the role of the writer in the climate crisis, the power of the monologue and Jessie gives one of our listeners some great writing advice in...

Archive | The Fox by Adrian Mitchell

Adrian MitchellThe Fox A prolific poet whose verse tackled social injustice, nuclear disarmament, racism and violence, and was often declaimed at political demonstrations, Adrian Mitchell's 'The Fox' was published in the June 1954 issue of The London Magazine, edited by John Lehmann. A fox among the shadows of the town Should I surrender to the arms of man? .......On the blank icehills...

Review | Keith Ridgway’s A Shock and Leon Craig’s Parallel Hells by Hallam Bullock

Hallam BullockKeith Ridgway’s A Shock and Leon Craig’s Parallel Hells  In his seventh book, A Shock, Keith Ridgway is like a croupier, shuffling together southeast London lives and doling them out to the reader.The novel opens with an evening in the lonely life of an elderly widow. Whilst a party next door throbs through the walls, she drifts through her...

Essay | The ‘Borderland’ – Ukrainian Identity, Past and Present by Yva Alexandrova 

Yva AlexandrovaThe 'Borderland' - Ukrainian Identity, Past and Present It is Day 53 of the war in Ukraine and just this week I was thinking to myself, fearing, I was becoming used to or numb to the stories, the images, the horrors coming out of Ukraine. And then I saw a picture of a boy, Danylo, holding on to his cat...

Poetry | Two Poems from Limbic by Peter Scalpello

Peter ScalpelloTwo Poems from Limbic The following poems are from Peter Scalpello's collection Limbic, published by Cipher Press. The collection explores masculinity, queer joy, chemsex, the stigma around HIV, shame, and much more besides. To order a copy, visit Cipher Press.I Need A Breaknewsflash—i was three years old—so it wasn’t my fault—you don’t get over—something like that—effortlessly—it follows—you everywhere—makes you—a lovely low-life—all...

Interview | Ben Turnbull

Eric BlockBen Turnbull  On the eve of a major presentation of his sculptures in Bristol, ‘angry Pop Artist’ Ben Turnbull talks about the inspirations behind his work.Can you tell us why you have used church pews and hymn books to create these artworks?I'm always looking for a material or medium that can represent many layers which is why I've...

Essay | ‘Force, hatred, history’: James Joyce’s Ulysses at 100 by Daniel Mulhall

Daniel Mulhall‘Force, hatred, history’: James Joyce’s Ulysses at 100  James Joyce’s Ulysses was published in Paris on 2 February 1922, its author’s fortieth birthday. An American prosecution for obscenity against the editors of the avant-garde magazine, The Little Review, meant no British or American publisher was willing to bring out an edition of Joyce’s now-notorious novel. It was left to...

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