The Threepenny Review

Culture & Literature
The Threepenny Review

The Threepenny Review Summer 2018

The Threepenny Review is a well-regarded quarterly of the arts and society which has been published since 1980. Every issue contains excellent essays, stories, poems, and memoirs, plus beautiful black-and-white photographs. Its regular writers include six Nobel Prizewinners and four U.S. Poet Laureates; recent issues featured writing by Wendell Berry, Geoff Dyer, Louise Glück, Greil Marcus, Javier Marías, Adam Phillips, and Kay Ryan.

United States
The Threepenny Review
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4 Issues

in this issue

3 min.

Rick Barot’s fourth collection of poems, The Galleons, is forthcoming from Milkweed Editions. He has published recent poetry in Tin House, The New Yorker, and Ploughshares. Elvis Bego was born in Bosnia and now lives in Copenhagen. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in Agni, Kenyon Review, and elsewhere. Thomas Beller is the author of The Sleep-Over Artist, J. D. Salinger, and other books. He lives in New Orleans and New York City. Lisa Chen is a Brooklyn-based writer born in Taipei. Her recent work appears in Catapult, Seneca Review, and Ninth Letter, and she is currently writing a book about the performance artist Tehching Hsieh. Jake Crist’s poems have appeared recently in Boulevard, Poetry, Plume, and Ruminate. He lives in Springfield, Ohio. Louise Glück, a former United States Poet Laureate, is the author…

12 min.
table talk

IT WAS because my father’s health had deteriorated to the point that he could no longer live alone that I came to possess his copy of Chinese Household Furniture, the Dover paperback edition with the pale yellow cover. It remains the only affordable, mass-produced study on the subject. First published in 1948, Chinese Household Furniture catalogs over a hundred individual pieces of furniture including tables, chairs, desks, stools, and chests that were in people’s homes in the 1930s. There are black-and-white photographs of each item and short accompanying text providing some historical background, descriptions of the design principles at work and the materials used. I was thrilled to find in its pages a version of the first piece of furniture my dad ever made (Plate 38), a narrow table two…

1 min.
thanks to our donors

The Threepenny Review is supported by Hunter College, the Bernard Osher Foundation, the Campizondo Foundation, the Rosenthal Family Foundation, the Seattle Foundation, and the George Lichter Family Fund. Our writer payments are underwritten by our Writers’ Circle, which includes Robert Bauer, Richard V. Clayton, Susan Knapp, Eunice & Jay Panetta, Robert Redford, Neal Rosenthal & Kerry Madigan, Alice Sebold, and Pablo Woodward. Many other generous individuals, whose names are printed annually in the spring issue, also assist us in keeping the magazine going. Heartfelt thanks to all!…

1 min.
a note on the artworks

David Goldblatt, who was born in 1930 in South Africa, has devoted almost his entire adult life to photography. In 1998 he became the first South African to be given a solo exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, and in 2001 a retrospective of his work, David Goldblatt Fifty-One Years, began a tour of galleries and museums. He was one of the few South African artists to exhibit at Documenta 11 (2002) and Documenta 12 (2007) in Kassel, Germany. His work was included in the exhibition ILLUMInations at the 54th Venice Biennale in 2011, and has featured in shows at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and the Barbican Centre in London. In addition to the comprehensive catalog from the Fifty-One Years exhibit, he has…

1 min.
catalog salesman

A child, I played with toys in the tall urnof an ashtray that my father kept besidehis easy chair, that old and sacred pedestalornate with amber glass and fret-worked stand,more grim and present than the Paschal candlein Easter sanctuaries. There my carscould speed past Turkish-blended Camels or Pall Malls’royal coats of arms and skid through ash.My youngest chore was emptying the traythat overbrimmed with V-shaped butts and flecksof loose tobacco dense as woodshop shavings. And once a salesman stopped and took Dad’s chair.My mother browsed a color catalogwhile he laid out his pipe accessories:a scraping knife, a screen, the furry pipecleaners we often used for arts and crafts,a leather pouch that housed an oxblood tinthat let out tiny sighs across the roomof aromatic Cherry Cavendish.Such care before he ever struck a…

14 min.
a cleaner’s diary

November 25 TODAY I started to work as a cleaner at a bed & breakfast. I’m not officially registered to work yet because of my complicated visa status. Not really, not fully. I’m not registered yet because I still haven’t sent them my documents, since I was scared they would think it looked too complicated. But this has nothing to do with cleaning toilets, or it has everything to do with it. I was right on time. I asked for Ali, my trainer for the day. I found him in the closet/storage room. Ali is a Turkish academic who works three jobs so he can afford to be a lecturer at a university here. We kind of look alike, except we don’t. Well, we’re both Turkish and we both have dark hair. First, we…