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Contributors
 

Meena Alexander
Jeff Barry
Richard Berengarten 1
Richard Berengarten 2
Richard Berengarten 3
Mashey Bernstein
Denise Duhamel
Geoffrey Heptonstall
Aamer Hussein
Neil Langdon Inglis
Laura Moser
Paschalis Nikolaou 1
Paschalis Nikolaou 2
Sean Rys
Maureen Seaton
Bina Shah
Carole Smith
Angela Topping
Julie Marie Wade
Ronaldo V. Wilson

Issue 21 Guest Artist:
Anne Noble

President: Peter Robertson
Vice-President: Sari Nusseibeh
Vice-President: Elena Poniatowska
Senior Editor-at-Large: Neil Langdon Inglis
Deputy Editor: Allen Hibbard
Deputy Editor: Geraldine Maxwell
Deputy Editor: Jerónimo Mohar Volkow
Deputy Editor: Bina Shah
Advisory Consultant: Jill Dawson
General Editor: Beatriz Hausner
General Editor: Laura Moser
General Editor: Malvina Segui
Art Editor: Calum Colvin
Deputy General Editor: Jeff Barry

Consulting Editors
Marjorie Agosín
Daniel Albright
Meena Alexander
Maria Teresa Andruetto
Frank Ankersmit
Rosemary Ashton
Reza Aslan
Leonard Barkan
Michael Barry
Shadi Bartsch
Thomas Bartscherer
Susan Bassnett
Gillian Beer
David Bellos
Richard Berengarten
Charles Bernstein
Sujata Bhatt
Mario Biagioli
Jean Boase-Beier
Elleke Boehmer
Eavan Boland
Stephen Booth
Alain de Botton
Carmen Boullossa
Rachel Bowlby
Svetlana Boym
Peter Brooks
Marina Brownlee
Roberto Brodsky
Carmen Bugan
Jenni Calder
Stanley Cavell
Sampurna Chattarji
Sarah Churchwell
Hollis Clayson
Sally Cline
Marcelo Cohen
Kristina Cordero
Drucilla Cornell
Junot Díaz
André Dombrowski
Denis Donoghue
Ariel Dorfman
Rita Dove
Denise Duhamel
Klaus Ebner
Robert Elsie
Stefano Evangelista
Orlando Figes
Tibor Fischer
Shelley Fisher Fishkin
Peter France
Nancy Fraser
Maureen Freely
Michael Fried
Marjorie Garber
Anne Garréta
Marilyn Gaull
Zulfikar Ghose
Paul Giles
Lydia Goehr
Vasco Graça Moura
A. C. Grayling
Stephen Greenblatt
Lavinia Greenlaw
Lawrence Grossberg
Edith Grossman
Elizabeth Grosz
Boris Groys
David Harsent
Benjamin Harshav
Geoffrey Hartman
François Hartog
Siobhan Harvey
Molly Haskell
Selina Hastings
Valerie Henitiuk
Kathryn Hughes
Aamer Hussein
Djelal Kadir
Kapka Kassabova
John Kelly
Martin Kern
Mimi Khalvati
Joseph Koerner
Annette Kolodny
Julia Kristeva
George Landow
Chang-Rae Lee
Mabel Lee
Linda Leith
Suzanne Jill Levine
Lydia Liu
Margot Livesey
Julia Lovell
Laurie Maguire
Willy Maley
Alberto Manguel
Ben Marcus
Paul Mariani
Marina Mayoral
Richard McCabe
Campbell McGrath
Jamie McKendrick
Edie Meidav
Jack Miles
Toril Moi
Susana Moore
Laura Mulvey
Azar Nafisi
Paschalis Nikolaou
Martha Nussbaum
Tim Parks
Molly Peacock
Pascale Petit
Clare Pettitt
Caryl Phillips
Robert Pinsky
Elizabeth Powers
Elizabeth Prettejohn
Martin Puchner
Kate Pullinger
Paula Rabinowitz
Rajeswari Sunder Rajan
James Richardson
François Rigolot
Geoffrey Robertson
Ritchie Robertson
Avital Ronell
Élisabeth Roudinesco
Carla Sassi
Michael Scammell
Celeste Schenck
Sudeep Sen
Hadaa Sendoo
Miranda Seymour
Daniel Shapiro
Mimi Sheller
Elaine Showalter
Penelope Shuttle
Werner Sollors
Frances Spalding
Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak
Julian Stallabrass
Susan Stewart
Rebecca Stott
Mark Strand
Kathryn Sutherland
Rebecca Swift
Susan Tiberghien
John Whittier Treat
David Treuer
David Trinidad
Marjorie Trusted
Lidia Vianu
Victor Vitanza
Marina Warner
David Wellbery
Edwin Williamson
Michael Wood
Theodore Zeldin

Assistant Editor: Sara Besserman
Assistant Editor: Ana de Biase
Assistant Editor: Conor Bracken
Assistant Editor: Eugenio Conchez
Assistant Editor: Patricia Delmar
Assistant Editor: Lucila Gallino
Assistant Editor: Sophie Lewis
Assistant Editor: Krista Oehlke
Assistant Editor: Siska Rappé
Assistant Editor: Naomi Schub
Assistant Editor: Stephanie Smith
Assistant Editor: Robert Toperter
Assistant Editor: Laurence Webb
Art Consultant: Verónica Barbatano
Art Consultant: Angie Roytgolz

 
Click to enlarge picture Click to enlarge picture. Transformations Suggestions of Antiquity
by
Geoffrey Heptonstall
 

 



Genesis

Before there was a world
there was space.
The universe was possible.
Nothing was certain.

Now the soul may speak
of the change that takes
one life to another.
The gods, who know all
that can be done,
inspire my song
from the Creation
onward to this
that is now.



Pygmalion

See the statue smile.
Touching her,
He feels a tremor in the stone.
And her eyes,
They watch the artist at work.
He speaks to her,
Murmuring thoughts
He dare not say aloud,
Not to the world he knows.
She is art, and understands
What cannot be spoken.
It is felt too deeply,
Like the love he feels for his creation.



Beggars’ Bounty

(The gods, disguised in rags, experience life on earth)

That shall include the horn-shaped skull
Washed on the strand by ocean tides.
And the leaf of the forest,
Dried out on the stone ground.
The gawping eyes of toads.
The leap of a hart evading the hunter.
Reflections on clear water,
Dazzling Daedalus and son.
Then hearing celestial sounds
In cedar and sycamore.

There are things to lose
In the dream of freedom.



The Bacchae

The wind that shook the vines
Raised the skirts of women,
Scrambling to the summit
Of their wilder dreams.
The god of abandon
Makes madness of everything.
In this state nobody cares.
The silken shreds cling to the gorse.
Satin shoes discarded sink into mud.

The rains that fall on the city
Slow the pursuit of men
In search of reason.
Sleep overtakes them.
Without iron and fire
The King is powerless.
All he has he summons,
Prepared alone to face the goat-god.
What he sees destroys him.



Orpheus Appears

On a desolate plain
Comes the heavenly song
From the God-gifted one,
Lyre in hand,
Wrestling with the wind.
He wanders in search of shade
Where none is found
On half-barren ground.

The sound of his song
Is sure to move heaven
To raise the cypress
Among the wild grass
For the sake of harmony
That stills the air
And lulls the wild heart.

All manner of trees
Position themselves hurriedly,
Arms outstretched in gestures fixed.
Their speech is silenced.
Sadness steals through the forest
Till the music wakens the world,
Opening the eyes of songbirds.



Actaeon

‘How dare he trespass?’
We asked of Actaeon,
Knowing all the while
The laws of chance favoured him
To be the one who saw her.
Revealed, ashamed and vengeful,
She was acting like one forsaken.
It was all leading to the end.
The hunting instinct stirs
The will unleashed from reason,
Hurrying to the chase.
Antlered Actaeon has been found wanting.



Orpheus Descending

Centaurs are still in Arcadia,
As still as frost.
Into the fissure of earth
Goes this life ephemeral,
Deeper than the certainties
Of the hermit’s dream.
The darkness alone
Sees Orpheus go down
To the rumoured margin
Of an exceptional scene,
Returning to find nothing
Has changed, except hope.