When was the last time Sam sat in this room. It must have been three years ago. April 2012. Nothing had changed in the room since then, except that the plastic chairs were now a bit more scuffed and k… Read article
Paris. Neatly numbered by arrondissements and perfectly hemmed in by the Périphérique, it's a gift for storytelling. While tales of other cities find their charm in a sense of sprawl, the impossibil… Read article
Green Lanes. It sounds pastoral, nostalgic, faintly utopian – like some network of ancient drovers’ tracks and holloways that endures furtively in a pocket of deep England. But Green Lanes could h… Read article
A series of coves pits the coast of Colombia’s Guajira Peninsula as it arcs northward into the Caribbean Sea: the Bahía Portete, the Bahía Honda, the Bahía Hondita. From the ground, these bays ar… Read article
Read J.R. Carpenter's Introductory Essay to 'Once Upon a Tide'. - ... READ FASTER. READ SLOWER. STOP. NEXT. … Read article
Midnight: we’re in the final throes of Virginia Woolf’s novel Orlando, at the end of the protagonist’s journey from the Elizabethan era to what was then the present, Thursday 11 October, 1928. … Read article
for Ian Patterson Hearing of molten rock which fell to mountains, meeting with three-faced statues on the beaches, returning suddenly to the fact of marble on sand dunes where the wind whips round my… Read article
‘A twenty-four degree summer’s day,’ the pilot said as they descended. It was dawn and the drifts of cloud flushed pink like new rose petals. Incredibly, wildflowers were pushing up beside the r… Read article
From north London to the North Pole, from the crowded arrondissements of eastern Paris to the sparse edge of the South American continent, this issue of The Junket assembles a footloose collection of new writing. Welcome to the departure lounge.
In ‘Birds and the Breeze’, Philip Sidney strikes out for the frozen spaces of the Arctic to take the temperature of modernist literature. His sharp essay explores the surprising effects of climate in novels by Virginia Woolf, D.H. Lawrence, and other early 20th-century writers. Meanwhile, at the other end of the thermometer, Claire Wilkinson travels the arid landscapes of coastal Colombia, finding tradition and modernity locked in an uneasy embrace between the desert and the sea.
Leaving dry land behind, J.R. Carpenter’s digital experiment ‘Once Upon a Tide’ invites readers aboard an uncanny vessel, crewed by insistent voices drawn from the works of Shakespeare and Conrad. Its shifting, iterative form provokes striking and unpredictable convergences between the two authors, demonstrating how new kinds of text can draw on – and renew – canonical works. And if Carpenter’s writing shows how innovative effects can be generated out of familiar materials, Thomas Marks’s appreciation of the painter Nick Goss describes a parallel practice: a way of making art ‘out of what feels foreign on one’s doorstep.’ Compelled by the diverse visual registers of Green Lanes, Goss’s paintings investigate the islands of otherness that dot our urban landscape; in their carefully restricted palettes and suggestive rendering of forms, they give a provisional kind of visibility to the city’s overlooked spaces and inhabitants.
From London, a short hop to Paris, where Matilda Bathurst joins the staff of a modish arts magazine only to find herself trapped in a strange workplace psychodrama with a difficult boss and a group of downtrodden colleagues. Her wry account catches the absurdity, as well as the desperation, of life in the internship economy. A different version of Paris emerges from Karl O’Hanlon’s two poems, ‘Verger’ and ‘Notre Dame de La Salette’, which speak of a city held in cross-currents of eternal and secular time, buoyed up – or perhaps weighed down – by the whole history of European culture. That history also haunts Laura Kilbride’s sestina ‘Boy With a Coney’, where, in praising the sculptor’s art, the poet painstakingly constructs an intricate form of her own. Composed on the volcanic island of Lipari, the poem makes of its metre another kind of time in which Olympus and Calvary meet in startling alignment.
Two short stories round out the issue. Matthew Sperling’s ‘Cloak’ plots a sexual history which is also a map of bodies connected through viral contact. Recasting Henry James’s dictum that in life, unlike fiction, ‘relations stop nowhere’, the narrator finds in the thought of his own contagiousness a kind of endless connectivity with ‘no outer limit anywhere’. Conversely, the narrator of Jo Lennan’s ‘A Land of Hope and Glory’ encounters nothing but impediment as he travels from Melbourne to visit his brother in Oxford. From the uncomfortable confines of a Heathrow interview room to the rebarbative architecture of the colleges, everything seems to emphasise the sense of a country closing in on itself against the rest of the world.
Be that as it may, the pieces collected here are still able to remind us of the connections we make in writing: connections with the past and future; connections with the elsewheres of the present; connections with readers and with other writers. There are plenty of destinations to choose from in this issue of The Junket. We hope you enjoy the journey.
List of Contributors
Matilda Bathurst is a copywriter and freelance journalist. https://matildabathurst.
J. R. Carpenter is a Canadian artist, writer, researcher, performer and maker of maps, zines, books, poetry, short fiction, long fiction, non-fiction, and non-linear, intertextual, hypermedia, and computer-generated narratives. She lives in South Devon, England. http://luckysoap.com @jr_carpenter
Laura Kilbride was born in 1988 and grew up in the North East of England. She is a fellow in English at Murray Edwards College (formerly New Hall), Cambridge. Her first pamphlet, Errata, came out from tipped press in 2011. In the Square, a long poem, was published in 2014 by Punch Press.
Jo Lennan’s reportage appears in Time Magazine, The Economist, and Australia’s The Monthly. She has won awards for her short fiction and a novel manuscript in progress. @jolennan
Karl O'Hanlon was born in Belfast. He is a founding co-editor of Eborakon. His work appears or will appear in Blackbox Manifold, Agenda, and Stand.
Philip Sidney is, among other things, Literary Editor of Quadrapheme. He lives in Kent. @P_W_E_S
Matthew Sperling writes poetry, fiction and criticism. He lives in London. @matt_sperling