Our Lady of Mercy
‘I was engaged in a battle of politeness, those kindly – but ferocious – skirmishes that are so common in our country.’
‘Didn’t we remember lyrics fine before we had the internet in our pockets?’ Danny Denton on the lost art of sing-songing.
Best Book of 1996: The Lost Lunar Baedeker
‘Mina Loy has been a preferred voice in my head, echoing with a signature delirious chant as a kind of primordial poetry mother.’
Writing While Worried
‘Just as it can spur me on, worry is adept at stifling and silencing.’
The Martians Claim Canada
‘Mushrooms have long memories. Some of them are thousands of years old. However, they are not always very talkative.’
The Blue Clerk
‘Now you are sounding like me, the clerk says. I am you, the author says.’
What is it that hurts?
‘Our visibility and our affirmation as a people is established through our language.’
The Canada Pictures
‘In the year leading up to this I started collecting objects that, in some way, evoked a sense of Canadianness in me.’
Écrire Avec Facultés Affaiblies
Comme il a grandi, j’ai pensé, puis j’ai passé la débarbouillette sous l’eau tiède du lavabo de la salle de bain.
Political resistance, poetry, self-revelation all spring from that provocative, impish drive to burst free from external constraints.
After Ann Lauterbach
‘The piano eyes me / from its corner – / colluding with the past’
‘I am not now who or what I was when I wrote this. I change as you read. I am changing now.’ New fiction from Robert Coover.
Assuming the Habits of the Day and Night
‘my every day is a being in of being / a mixity of worlds’
‘That supremacist is the idea, in those brothers and sisters of mine, of shyness (which no one understands) being an encumbrance that they should purge as they try to find in their interaction with the world a perfect mixture of disdain, meekness and expansiveness.’
‘Did she process my gentle hand in the same way as the objectifying touch of the men before me? Did she know the difference?’
Brian Dillon on the Prozac craze of the 90s, and his experience taking the infamous antidepressant.
‘Nothing mesh, the friend who had gotten Tracy the Stuck Girls job told her. This isn’t porn. The guys pay just to watch a regular girl who happens to get stuck.’
The Republic of Motherhood
‘a cardigan / soft as a creature, smelling of birth and milk’ – New poetry from Liz Berry.
Soon Comes Night
‘I’d become so used to hiding away inside myself I couldn’t respond with any spontaneity. I was stuck in the shallows of my emotions.’ Ekow Eshun on success, night terrors and therapy.
‘Maybe you heard about the sticks of dynamite he set along military rail routes, waiting for them to spark and explode.’ New flash fiction from Molly Antopol
Notes on a Suicide
‘The problem was that, for the most part, it did not matter how widely broadcast your discontent was: no one cared.’
Out of the Cradle
‘What had formerly been a sedative, a tranquilizing soporific, had morphed into a facilitator of reflection, contemplation, deliberation, even inspiration.’
‘The idea that football might provide an opportunity to overcome our dumber instincts seemed ridiculous now: football was a chance to set our idiocy free.’
Flash at Home
‘Flash Gordon, home from the terrible emptiness of space, has to make up stories for fear of worldwide despair.’
Mark Doten | Five Things Right Now
‘Is there any doubt that Proust would have been obsessed with the Internet?’
‘I haven’t learned very much in my life, I’ve just become a more / Choreographed disaster’
‘Six feet of man, muscled up perfect, game to the heart.’ New fiction from Jeffery Renard Allen.
‘Yes. Oh yes. That is who we once were. The Young must never, ever allow themselves to ignore what has brought them here.’
Amit Chaudhuri | First Sentence
‘A scene in which nothing is ostensibly happening will absorb me; so will a paragraph that contains no vital piece of information.’
Emma Cline | Five Things Right Now
The author of The Girls and one of our 2017 Best of Young American Novelist shares five things she’s reading, watching and thinking about right now.
Caravan of Freedom
When Fidel Castro died, his funeral procession was called a ‘Caravan of Freedom’, and extended 900km, from Santiago to Havana.
A Pinch of Salt
‘When we’re close to weaning / ourselves history gives us its reasons / to return’