- Current Issue
SIGN IN to access Harper’s Magazine
1. Sign in to Customer Care using your account number or postal address.
2. Select Email/Password Information.
3. Enter your new information and click on Save My Changes.
Subscribers can find additional help here. Not a subscriber? Subscribe today!
Fake art movements usually involve one really famous person and then a
bunch of hangers-on. Like Josie and the Pussycats. Or Jackson Pollock
and a bunch of people who drank with Jackson Pollock. Imagine how much
better off Josie would have been minus those Pussycats hogging all her
fame. Poetry movements usually include a bunch of interchangeable
poets with little fame trying to create something famous (or
fame-worthy) by pooling their efforts, like all the little lion robots
that slam into each other to form Voltron. What ends up happening is
that Voltron gets a bum leg and back problems, because some of those
lions are lame poets. And then Voltron is defeated and the fake art
movement turns into just a bunch of bitter old poets. Not so glorious.
I mean, sure, your movement can get a special issue of Poetry
magazine, but wouldn’t you rather have an entire issue of Poetry
magazine dedicated to you? With you smiling out from the cover? Never
take your eyes off the prize, and when you have a chance to do so,
beat down all competition with the mallet made famous by Whack-a-Mole.
–“24/7 Relentless Careerism: How you can become the most important
poet in America overnight,” Jim Behrle, Poetry
Tall skinny guys with lots of body hair are “otters”; average-size men
who are relatively hairy and, often, exceptionally horny consider
themselves “wolves.” In the old days, before we got all politically
correct about everything, guys who were attracted to bigger men were
called “chubby chasers,” but no more. Nowadays, men who don’t fit into
any of the above categories who enjoy ursine company are called,
simply, “admirers.” And that’s just the Anglos. Many Asian bears like
to be called “pandas,” regardless of where their ancestors were born,
though just as many find the term offensive. Smooth-skinned Latinos
with short, compact physiques are often referred to as “toros” (or
bulls), which also suggests a testicular prowess. –“Confessions of a
Call Bear,” Rusty McMann,
I think about how Manny Pacquiao’s life is a cyclone of madness and
dysfunction and karaoke and tango dancing and fucked-to-death lions
and grown men vying to fluff his rice and cut his meat and massage his
thighs and sing harmony parts on Beatles songs.
How can he live this way?
Because he is the serene centering Eye. The storm, his life, envelops
but does not touch him. The Tysonesque psychopathologies that drive
other boxers to the dark side are flung centrifugally from his body
and soul, outsourced to his disciples, who carry this burden and lay
down their lives for him. –“The Biggest Little Man in the World,”
Fleming awoke in the dark and his room felt loose, sloshing so badly he gripped the bed. From his window there was nothing but a hallway, and if he craned his neck, a blown lightbulb swung into view. The room pitched up and down and for a moment he thought he might be sick. The word “hallway” must have a nautical name. Why didn’t they supply a glossary for this cruise? Probably they had, in the welcome packet he’d failed to read. A glossary. A history of the boat, which would be referred to as a ship. Sunny biographies of the captain and crew, who had always dreamed of this life. Lobotomized histories of the islands they’d visit. Who else had sailed this way. Famous suckwads from the past, slicing through this very water on wooden longships.
A welcome packet, the literary genre most likely to succeed in the new millennium. Why not read about a community you don’t belong to, that doesn’t actually exist, a captain and crew who are, in reality, if that isn’t too much of a downer on your vacation, as indifferent to one another as any set of co-employees at an office or bank? Read doctored personal statements from underpaid crew members — because ocean life pays better than money! — who hate their lives but have been forced to buy into the mythology of working on a boat, separated now from loved ones and friends, growing lonelier by the second, even while they wait on you and follow your every order.
Number of people stopped and frisked by the NYPD in 2011 for “furtive movements”:
The faces of Lego people were growing angrier.
Four people were arrested for using a remote-controlled hexacopter to fly two pounds of tobacco to prisoners inside the yard at Calhoun State Prison in Georgia.
Subscribe to the Weekly Review newsletter. Don’t worry, we won’t sell your email address!
Our congratulations to Alice Munro, winner of the 2013 Nobel Prize for Literature