Magazine | August 16, 2010, Issue

Poetry

ADVERTISEMENT FOR “LET’S PRAY”

Choreographed by Thandumzi Moyakhe,

performed by Nqaba Mafilika and Bathembu

Myira, Johannesburg, South Africa

They dance there with outrageous zest,

Kneeling and swaying without rest,

White crosses painted on their chests.

Hour after hour I see them falling,

Rolling and riotously crawling,

Uproariously reaching, sprawling.

They fill their mouths with stolen light.

See how their closed eyes gorge on sight

So vast, yet in the world so slight;

How they are crucified who pray,

And how they dance, tomorrow and

today,

In Africa, which is so far away.

Sarah Ruden is the author, most recently, of The Face of Water: A Translator on Beauty and Meaning in the Bible. She also has translated Augustine’s Confessions.

In This Issue

Articles

Politics & Policy

Sheriff McCain

As his fellow incumbents drown in a tea-party wave, Sen. John McCain somehow remains afloat. On August 24, McCain squares off against J. D. Hayworth, a former congressman, in Arizona’s ...

Features

Politics & Policy

Ban the Burqa

Istanbul – I moved here five years ago. In the beginning, I was sympathetic to the argument that Turkey’s ban on headscarves in universities and public institutions was grossly discriminatory. I spoke ...
Politics & Policy

A Clash of Opposites

Not long ago, two friends were talking about the current election season. Both of them are conservative, but one especially dislikes the McCain-Feingold law (which restricted campaign finance and political ...

Books, Arts & Manners

The Straggler

On Thy Silver Wheels

The recent political ructions over the extension of unemployment benefits brought Norman Tebbit to my mind. Tebbit was Margaret Thatcher’s secretary of state for employment in the early 1980s. There ...
Politics & Policy

The Drive to Create

In a castle in Newcastle, complete with reflecting pool, dappled woods nooked with marble sculptures, and pastures lowing with cattle, Matt Ridley, dean of British science writers and author of ...

Sections

The Long View

Therapist’s Notes

Patient: Andrew Breitbart First Session: Therapist greets patient, who arrives with three BlackBerrys. Patient is pleasant and good-humored, seems aware of his surroundings, is able to carry on simple transactional conversations. Patient, ...
Politics & Policy

Poetry

ADVERTISEMENT FOR “LET’S PRAY” Choreographed by Thandumzi Moyakhe, performed by Nqaba Mafilika and Bathembu Myira, Johannesburg, South Africa They dance there with outrageous zest, Kneeling and swaying without rest, White crosses painted on their chests. Hour after ...
Athwart

Captain Post-America

You can imagine the fist-pumping and broad grins that went around Hollywood when it was announced they were making a movie about Captain America — and the subsequent dismay when ...
Politics & Policy

Letters

Acceptable Risk? In his article “Preferred Risk” (July 5), Iain Murray states that “the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), which encourages building in high-risk areas, [exposes] taxpayers to huge liabilities.” I ...
Politics & Policy

The Week

‐ Congress has an 11 percent job-approval rating. Who knew there were so many trial lawyers? ‐ Midterm elections are generally referenda on the party in power, and that is especially ...

Most Popular

Culture

White Cats and Black Swans

Making a film of Cats is a bold endeavor — it is a musical with no real plot, based on T. S. Eliot’s idea of child-appropriate poems, and old Tom was a strange cat indeed. Casting Idris Elba as the criminal cat Macavity seems almost inevitable — he has always made a great gangster — but I think there was ... Read More
Politics & Policy

The Other Case against Reparations

Reparations are an ethical disaster. Proceeding from a doctrine of collective guilt, they are the penalty for slavery and Jim Crow, sins of which few living Americans stand accused. An offense against common sense as well as morality, reparations would take from Bubba and give to Barack, never mind if the former ... Read More
Politics & Policy

May I See Your ID?

Identity is big these days, and probably all days: racial identity, ethnic identity, political identity, etc. Tribalism. It seems to be baked into the human cake. Only the consciously, persistently religious, or spiritual, transcend it, I suppose. (“There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor ... Read More
Health Care

The Puzzling Problem of Vaping

San Francisco -- A 29-story office building at 123 Mission Street illustrates the policy puzzles that fester because of these facts: For centuries, tobacco has been a widely used, legal consumer good that does serious and often lethal harm when used as it is intended to be used. And its harmfulness has been a ... Read More