On the battlefield with Li Ling; Petina Gappah in Zimbabwe with the Mupandawana dancing champion; Tracey Hill in transit; Samantha Hunt gets noticed; Naomi J. Williams goes to sea; Yiyun Li gossips; John Wray and Matt Dojny take a sightseeing tour of New York; Denis Donoghue revisits history; poems by Suzanne Buffam, Mahmoud Darwish, Jennifer Moxley, Adrienne Rich, and others; and introducing Sara Majka.
Issue 08 • Samantha HuntI love to hear that another memoir has been exposed as a big phony.
Issue 08 • Tracey HillYou are never happier than when you’re in transit.
Issue 08 • Yiyun LiThe neighborhood where I grew up and where my parents still live is one of the apartment compounds built in the 1950s in Beijing.
Issue 08 • Petina GappahWhen the prices of everything went up ninety-seven times in one year, M’dhara Vitalis Mukaro came out of retirement to make the coffins in which we buried our dead.
Issue 08 • Shena MackayThe train carrying Neville back to Hampshire was formed of ten coaches and was scheduled to divide at Eastleigh, where the front five carriages would proceed to Poole, while the rear five branched off toward the New Forest.
Issue 08 • John WrayIn the early 1980s, faced with rapidly dwindling shelf space in their seven tiers of stacks, the New York Public Library at Forty-Second Street—the one with the lions—prevailed upon the city to fund the construction of a gargantuan book storage annex thirty feet under the grass and London plane trees of Bryant Park.
Issue 08 • Adrienne RichA woman of the citizen party—what’s that— / is writing history backward / her body the chair she sits in / to be abandoned repossessed
Issue 08 • Matthew ZapruderI do not acknowledge it, though it is mine.
Issue 08 • Fred SchmalzI had not felt so / tired so early in the day / since last winter
Issue 08 • Suzanne BuffamThe time and place and manner of my death are three facts that / don’t exist yet.
Issue 08 • Francis PongeOn the typographic bushes of the poem down a road leading neither out of things nor to the mind, certain fruits are composed of an agglomeration of spheres plumped with a drop of ink.
Issue 08 • Ben LernerThe bird is a little machine for forgetting / The freight trains that pass my house
Issue 08 • Jennifer KronovetThe earth’s humus is made fertile / through the worm’s anus.
Issue 08 • Carl PhillipsIt was as if they’d stepped into the head / of a wind god, / and gotten trapped there and, / within captivity, made a space they could / sometimes recognize.
Issue 08 • Jennifer MoxleyThere is a way in which / I can be distracted / from what matters.
Issue 08 • Jürgen BeckerBlackbirds, then other voices.
Issue 08 • Julie CarrNothing here, just the sound of the heat, the sound of the cars, / nothing, nothing
Issue 08 • Thomas Hummelthough I may not recognize the places I have / seen it, it is still an ornament, an ornament / known well; I know its name, I traced / those lines, and feel easy now about it.
Issue 08 • Rebecca WolffThe other side of the mountain / collects / and even cultivates / its mystery
Issue 08 • Mahmoud DarwishOn the last evening on this earth, we sever our days / from our trees, and count the ribs we will carry along / and the ribs we will leave behind
Issue 08 • Naomi J. WilliamsIt is the afternoon of August 26, 1785, and Jean-Honoré-Robert de Paul, chevalier de Lamanon, has just returned to the Boussole, exhilarated and exhausted after a successful ascent of the Peak of Tenerife.
Issue 08 • Paul McCarthyOn Atsushi Nakajima's masterpiece.
Issue 08 • Atsushi NakajimaIn the ninth lunar month of Tianhan 2 (99 B.C.E.), during the reign of Emperor Wu of the Han Dynasty, Commander of the Cavalry Li Ling led a force of five thousand foot soldiers north from the border fort of Zheluzhang.
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