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Feb 032014
 
Bored at the British Library

by Susan Harlan
It’s a terrible thing to say, but I’m bored. I’m bored at the British Library. So there it is. It seems like I’ve been here forever. I look at my watch: I’ve been here for two hours and eighteen minutes. I figure this means that I can’t leave yet. Two hours and eighteen minutes is not an honest work day. Two hours and eighteen minutes does not represent a good Protestant work ethic. [read more…]

Jan 232014
 
London's Campest Statues No.15

Yuri Gagarin, Greenwich Observatory by Matt Haynes
When, at 06:07 on the morning of 12th April 1961, Lieutenant Yuri Alekseyevich Gagarin of the Soviet Air Force strapped himself into the capsule of Vostok 1 as it waited on the launch pad at the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan and uttered the words “Let’s go!”, thus inaugurating the history of manned space flight, it always seemed likely that, should he return safely, he would be fêted around the world. [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…]

Apr 092013
 
It Grows On You, Like A Rash

by Jess Sully
A known introvert from a town with wide skies and a vast, shimmering expanse of sea, I didn’t think I’d be happy among the hemmed-in crowds. What I didn’t realise then is that within the anonymity of the ever-flowing throng, those shoals of fast-moving fish who swoop and turn as one entity, I could move silently, unobtrusive and unremarkable. And now I know, too, that sometimes at low tide the Thames smells of brine and seaweed. [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…]