National Review / Digital



It’s 1925, I sit in the chair
across from Capablanca. I’m here to replace
Herr Lasker, but the Cuban couldn’t care,
the clock is ticking; there’s sweat on my face.
I see that black’s a hopeless situation:
It’s middle-game, French Defense. But I ignore
the crush of infinite numbers, and calculation,
and push my little pawn to Queen’s Rook 4.
It’s 2001, I’ve read your poems and decide
to start with one about love — when you found
your Catharina — and though I’m mystified
by the endless permutations of words and sound,
I finally lift my pen, in frustration,
rhyming “creation” with “supplication.”

September 19, 2011    |     Volume LXIII, No. 17

  • Not a reluctance to amend the Constitution, but a willingness to follow its rules.
  • Wisconsin’s GOP senate withstands a Democratic assault, barely.
  • A lottery is no way to pick who gets to be American.
  • Saif Qaddafi comes home, in the worst way.
Books, Arts & Manners
  • Daniel J. Mahoney reviews Apricot Jam and Other Stories, by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, translated by Kenneth Lantz and Stephan Solzhenitsyn.
  • Mary Eberstadt reviews The Pope & the CEO: John Paul II’s Leadership Lessons to a Young Swiss Guard, by Andreas Widmer.
  • Tevi Troy reviews Tension City: Inside the Presidential Debates, from Kennedy–Nixon to Obama–McCain, by Jim Lehrer.
  • Jay Nordlinger on happenings at the Salzburg Festival, and beyond.
  • Ross Douthat reviews Rise of the Planet of the Apes.
  • Richard Brookhiser catches the previews.
The Long View  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  
Athwart  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  
Poetry  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  
Happy Warrior  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .