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Poetry | Schrödinger’s Black & Yard by Caleb Femi

What are you looting for? asked the evening News, & the crowd continued looting. I wasn’t there, / but I thought I was – my brazen face live on the nation’s screens, half-tucked under a t-shirt / chucking bricks. An expert on riots was invited to speak about why these particular young people / were rioting. While he talked they showed more footage: / a bus set on fire, / hooded boys with overgrown nails, / a sky that refused to bring shine nor rain / (as if it had decided [...]

Essay | A Humming Republic of Others by Leaf Arbuthnot

Somewhere in my friend Ayla’s flat in London is an A4 pile of emails written by me in 2003. I was eleven at the time, and a very young eleven: dorky, so freckled you could barely see my eyes, anxious that my new secondary school didn’t have a playground. The emails are from me. But they’re also to me. That school year, I kept up an impassioned digital correspondence with myself. The exchanges are deranged, but also charming in their way. ‘How are you?’ [...]

Fiction | Bottles by Jelle Cauwenberghs

My arms are very long, much longer than I remember. And I am flaking. It is that time of year, when the ice glitters on the bark of trees and the orioles start to shiver in their thicket by the station. It used to frighten me, but now I just clean up after the moult. I wipe the shower tray and eat the crumbs and dandruff like a mouse that eats her own young. I am very tired and all I want to do is sleep. At night I wrap my arms around my torso. In conversation I do the same [...]

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