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Jul 302014
 
Perigee

by MW Bewick
Hattie also remembered that when my father was a child he had described the river as a yawning snake, which to me seems precocious. To him, snakes meant danger, and the space below the bridges was filled with slithering horror. They found things in rivers too. It said so on the news. Whatever people secreted in the unfathomable water eventually washed up. [read more…]

Jul 212014
 
Iain And Will Have A Cup Of Tea

Iain And Will Have A Cup Of Tea
by Matt Haynes
Iain stared glumly at the stained formica. “It’s like I said, when I told you how Hackney’s pre-Games decontamination and realignment into a fugitive cartography of designer lock-ups and guerrilla sofa bars had created a hallucinatory Ballardian nexus of dystopian interzones – some of the ley lines they dug up to build the Basketball Arena had been there since the days of King Lud.” [read more…]

Jun 162014
 
Please Pay At The Till

by Steve Lake
But maybe my memory is playing tricks, for working at Foyles in the 80s wasn’t unlike a trip on some fairly serious hallucinogenic drugs. There was, for example, the story of the disgruntled employee sowing seeds into the specially moistened carpets of the rarely-visited Philosophy Department on a Friday evening and returning on Monday to find a small field of cress, ready to be added to his sandwiches. [read more…]

May 302014
 
Morning Tea with George

by David Marston
There, at the end, was a tent. And not just a tent. An upturned steel drum was acting as a rainwater butt. White brushed ash marked the site of a fire. Clothes hung from a bush, drying in the morning sun, and a rolled-up tarp suggested some more extensive waterproofing had recently been in use. Someone was living under canvas just outside Lewisham town centre. [read more…]

May 182014
 
What We Love Is All We Really Lose

by Jacqueline Downs
I don’t know what they call this place; it seems to have several names. Norwood. Upper Norwood. Crystal Palace. Who knows? Who cares? All I know is I most certainly didn’t expect to find myself here after the Losey and Pinter, the serious stuff. Another bloody ruffian, although this, too, is – in my view – serious stuff. I am to be murdered with a poker, I believe. By a child! Brilliant. Subversive. We all know that children can be little fuckers. [read more…]

May 122014
 
A Short Journey Downriver

A Short Journey Downriver by Mark Sadler
Twice a day, when the tide is high, the Thames floods the broad, low-ceilinged underground channel from which the Granville emerges. During the autumn and winter, as the temperature drops, these back surges create localised fogs that linger along Upper and Lower Thames Street. The river that London buried alive rises like a ghost through the porous layers of paving to reassert its claim upon its former overground course. [read more…]

Apr 212014
 
Sherlock Holmes and the Howling Desert of South London

by Lucy Munro
I’ve been re-reading Sherlock Holmes. Not in the doorstopper collection with almost see-through paper I bought when I was thirteen and lugged to school and back for a blissful fortnight, immersed in its foggy miasma and gleefully drinking in the details of Holmes’ not-so-secret drug habit, but in a £1.99 Wordsworth edition comprising everything up to his demise at the Reichenbach Falls, a death from which he was never intended to return. [read more…]

Apr 142014
 
The New Romantic Luge

by Matt Haynes
Hedonism, of course, was the name of the game, and pretty much anything went. One night, Boy George nearly brought Duran Duran’s career to a premature end when, clutching a garish mojito, he hurtled down the slope using Simon le Bon as a toboggan; luckily for the course of popular music, the chubby Brummie took it in his pantalooned stride. [read more…]