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Jan 092013
 
The Comfort and the Joy of Feeling Lost

by Jamie Woods
We head back up to the balcony, the girls with tinsel in their hair, our girls, Clare; they kiss boys, older boys, boys we don’t know. We watch scornfully, teasingly, jealously. We drink until our money runs out, until it’s time to go. Danny downs a pint of Guinness in one, flips open his gullet and pours. We’re sixteen: this is one of the coolest things we’ve ever seen. [read more…]

Dec 152012
 
The Reluctant Voyeur

by James Hunt
I can tell they are from out of town because they’re all carrying M&M’s World bags. They’re deciding whether to go to Camden Town or Harrods when they finish their burgers and bottled cider. I glance in their direction and catch my reflection in the large mirror. I look appalled. The two sons are enormous. They’ve got matching fringes, making them look like talent show hopefuls pumped up with helium. Enjoy the M&Ms, boys. [read more…]

Oct 182012
 

Outside the Crown next morning, a wreath shaped like a giant emulsion brush stands propped against the recycling bin; as the breeze rises, wet white petals drip onto the pavement.

Mar 042012
 
Ales of the Riverbank

by Matt Haynes
There is, Doctor Johnson once observed, no more agreeable a place for an Englishman to unexpectedly find himself stuck than within the four sturdy walls of a well-kept public house: “Sir, give a man a pint of strong dark ale, an audience of keen-witted peers, and the promise of a plump and willing wench at the end of the evening, and a simple and profound contentment will be his.” [read more…]

Feb 292012
 

“See you tomorrow, love,” says the barmaid, blustering out into the E10 afternoon. He nods, Wetherspoons pie half-eaten, coat still buttoned against the cold he feels much more these days.

Feb 142012
 

Passing The Rocket on Euston Road, I remember the hair rising from the nape of his neck, his toes under the table, the two-for-the-price-of-one meals going cold as we warmed.