A magazine I used to read once ran a competition for creative misprints. The prize went to a reader who transformed a stanza in The Rime of the Ancient Mariner by adding a single letter to a single word; in the doctored version, the Mariner was compared to

one, that on a lonesome road
Doth walk in fear and dread,
And having once turned round walks on
And turns no more his head;
Because he knows, a frightful friend
Doth close behind him tread.

Ah yes, many of us will know what it is to be pursued by a frightful friend. Friendship can be a complicated phenomenon.

Few writers are better equipped to examine its complexities than Joseph Epstein. He has established himself, in both his essays and his stories, as a notably shrewd observer of men and manners, at once subtle and down to earth. His humor rests on a strong sense...

 

A Message from the Editors

As a reader of our efforts, you have stood with us on the front lines in the battle for culture. Learn how your support contributes to our continued defense of truth.

Popular Right Now