South Bank

Jul 312013
 
Stepping Across The Thames

by Matt Haynes
Out here, the river’s still allowed to undo its buttons twice a day and slob out across the mud with primordial glee. For one of the Thames’s more discombobulating quirks is that it’s wider upstream than down, where it’s been artificially banked and trammelled – no one paddles on the beach outside Lambeth Palace any more, not since Mr Bazalgette’s embankments went up in the 1860s and the Archbishop lost his deckchair concession. [read more...]

Jun 062013
 
The Tenner

by Joan Byrne
It’s Friday afternoon and I’m in the sanctuary that is Tate Modern Members’ Room. I’m enjoying an elevated feeling of oneness with life and art, and loving the view of the City with St Paul’s at its centre. Sipping a coffee, I watch people come and go. Many of them are works of art themselves, but not this man. He’s dead ordinary, mid-sixties, impassive face, bland dresser. With him is a girl, aged about fourteen. [read more...]

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May 012013
 
The Break

by Natasha Green
I saw Maggie slip a compact out of her bag and smooth her hair in the mirror, tucking a lock of it behind one ear. She smiled and waved at me. Gone was the curly-haired maelstrom, with eyes circled in crumbling kohl and hands tipped with chipped silver nail polish; the Maggie of early-morning telephone calls full of grotesque imitations of spurned lovers abandoned in the night, calls that left me laughing and gasping for air on the other end of the line. [read more...]

Sep 072012
 
Unreal City

Unreal City by Jude Rogers
So we went then, you and I, waiting for the rest of our lives to wake us from the winter. “Come,” I’d whispered on that white afternoon, as your train pulled away to the north and you still stood there on Silver Street’s empty platform, your cheeks iced and bright, your eyes warm, your arms wrapped tight around my ruby red coat. “Come and watch the spring begin with me.” [read more...]

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Jul 162012
 
The Muted Trumpet

by Matt Haynes
Whenever the need to fondle something long and wrinkly grew too much to bear – which, after the death of her beloved Albert, was at least twice a week – lucky old Queen Victoria seldom found herself frustrated in the way of ordinary women, for one of the perks of being Empress Of All The Pink Bits was a plentiful supply of pachyderms, gifts from foreign potentates to whom such beasts were, frankly, little more than garden pests. [read more...]

May 232012
 
Pigeons in Puddles No. 7

No. 7 South Bank
I think we all know the story behind Coldplay’s Yellow but, in case you’ve forgotten, it seems that frontman Chris Martin was absent-mindedly looking out his window one afternoon when he saw something – the sun, a daffodil, Gwyneth Paltrow, nobody’s entirely sure – which made him stop and say to himself: that’s yellow, that is. [read more...]

Feb 022012
 
Our Day Out

by Melissa Davidson
We boarded the train for Euston, you and your dad and me. We played I Spy and you giggled when I said fart. We disembarked and made our way to the Eye. Both wearing red, we bundled up brightly against the grey sky, cheeks the colour of our jackets. [read more...]