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The Threepenny Review

The Threepenny Review Fall 2019

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.

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United States
The Threepenny Review
4 Issues

in this issue

3 min

J. T. Barbarese’s latest book of poetry is True Does Nothing. His translation of selected poems of Jacques Prevért, After Prevért, will appear later this year. Bennet Bergman is currently a teaching fellow at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. Evan M. Brooke teaches high school English outside of Philadelphia. She is studying fiction at the Bennington Writing Seminars. Abhrajyoti Chakraborty’s writing has also appeared in The Nation, The New Yorker, and elsewhere. He last wrote for Threepenny on V. S. Naipaul. Andrea Cohen’s new collection of poems, Nightshade, is just out with Four Way Books. Christopher Craig teaches literature and writing at UMass Boston. His work has appeared in Southeast Review, Radical Teacher, and other journals. Sarah Deming’s new novel, Gravity, will be out in November. She is a former Golden Gloves champion who coaches young boxers…

12 min
table talk

THE BOOK begins with one of the best opening lines ever: “All children, except one, grow up.” Barrie’s wit is inexhaustibly self-referential, and when it’s not sliding into parodies of axioms or little hymns to the novel’s real hero, Mrs. Darling, it is clowning, bittersweetly, on the sidelines. His genius, like Austen’s, is disruptive. He’s the kid who gains attention by mirroring the mannerisms of the adults he finds ridiculous or merely loathsome. The under-theme of Peter Pan is that the narrator cannot understand how the child can be the father of the man and at the same time how the grown man can ever mature into something more than a child. Peter Pan himself begins as a figure of thought in the middle of the nineteenth century, which was as…

1 min
from the window of my home-town hotel

On the lee slope of the small coastal mountainwhich conceals the sun the first hour after its rising,in the dry, steep ravines, the livemist of the heat is seething like dustleft over from an earlier world.A crow with a swimmer’s shoulders worksthe air. And a little bird flies up into atree and closes its wings, like a blossomfolded up into a bud again.In the distance is a very old pine, now sparseand frail as hand-painted on a platewashed for a hundred years. And the bellin the tower, which rings the hours—the rhythmof its intervals is known to me.I am forgetting my mother. It well may besome fur of her marrow is in a steeptrough of fog aslant in a gougeof these hills—her bones were pestled in this city,down the street…

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 who help support the magazine are listed annually in the spring issue. Our heartfelt thanks to all!…

2 min
a note on the artworks

Born in 1899 in Brasso, Hungary, under the name Gyula Halász, the photographer who became known as Brassaï (that is, “from Brasso”) was one of the great masters of the twentieth century. He is perhaps best known for his Paris at Night series of the 1930s, but in addition to photographing night-time workers, lamplit monuments, and deserted streets, he also produced revealing portraits and self-portraits, splendid nudes, intimate café encounters and gay ballroom scenes, memorable pictures of criminals, prostitutes, and night-club entertainers, and even formally audacious near-abstractions, including some marvelous walls of graffiti. Brassaï continued to work practically up to his death in 1984, though he devoted his later years mainly to drawing, painting, and especially sculpture. (Of his early drawings, Picasso reportedly said to him, “You’re a born draftsman.…

1 min
photo credits

With the exception of the two news photos on pages 24 and 25, all of the images in this issue are by Brassaï and are copyrighted by the Estate Brassaï Succession, Paris. The Brassaï images were kindly provided to us by the Fundación MAPFRE in Barcelona. The image on page 24 is in the public domain; the one on page 25 was licensed to us by Getty Images. Below are captions for each photo, listed by page. Cover: Brassaï, Haute Couture Soirée, 1935. 3: Brassaï, Extinguishing a Streetlight, rue Émile Richard, c. 1932. 4: Brassaï, The Eiffel Tower seen through the Gate of the Trocadero, 1930–32. 6: Brassaï, Streetwalker, near the Place d’Italie, 1932. 8: Brassaï, Montmartre, 1930–31. 9: Brassaï, Concierge’s Lodge, Paris, 1933. 11: Brassaï, Bal des Quatres Saisons, rue de Lappe, c. 1932. 15: Brassaï, Chez…