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Suspect stabbed his friend to death after victim insisted prose was superior as literary genre

Book reviews: Poetry round-up

Poets have traditionally written to tempt coy mistresses into bed, and Marvell duly turns up inside the covers of The Poetry of Sex (Viking £14.99). Published in time for Valentine’s Day, this anthology features a huge “X” on its cover. Is there such a thing as raunchy poetry? Does the editor Sophie Hannah want us to admire the enjambment or heat- up so much that, like Dante’s Paolo and Francesca, we tremblingly push the book aside and “read no more that day”?

Review: 'The Lie' by Helen Dunmore

A Great War novel that traverses themes of delayed trauma and survivor guilt

Masonic conspiracy or MI6 recruitment tool? Internet mystery Cicada 3301 starts up again

The international puzzle that requires knowledge of steganography, Aleister Crowley and the darknet is back again, and the internet is just as confused

Freyberg in 1991: a trained artist and a collector of objets d'art, she understood well the discipline and touch of the craftsman

Annabel Freyberg: Gifted writer and editor whose wit, taste, and brio enhanced the obituaries pages of 'The Independent'

Annabel Freyberg was, for 30 years, one of the most vivid and memorable figures in London journalism. An easy prose stylist and a sympathetic, sharp-eyed editor, she held senior editorial positions at The Independent (where she was deputy editor of the obituaries pages from 1995-99), the London Evening Standard, The World of Interiors, and the Daily Telegraph Magazine. She wrote with brio – and with a fresh, scholarly, and unexpected take – on fine and decorative arts, artists, interiors, houses and food. She published Ceramics for the Home (1999) and in recent years produced a handsome, quirky Teapot & Tea Calendar. That she should have delighted in teapots – the most practical, elegant but complicated product of the potter's art – was all of a piece with Freyberg, a trained artist and unfettered collector of objets d'art who understood the discipline and touch of a craftsman.

Nathan Filer, 32, is a lecturer but also works in mental health

Mental health nurse Nathan Filer wins Costa first novel prize with The Shock of the Fall

Nathan Filer's novel explores a man's descent into mental illness

Video: Boy with rare medical condition writes poem about eating sausages

Jonathan He has captured the hearts of the nation with his poem about his favourite food

Syrian rebels have taken iconoclasm to new depths, with shrines, statues and even a tree destroyed – but to what end?

Compared writing poetry to the sex act? May he be turned to dust!

Geoffrey Hill: Broken Hierarchies: Collected Poems 1952-2012, edited by Kenneth Haynes

Poetry of love, landscape and political corruption

Michael Adebolajo (left) and Michael Adebowale are accused of murdering Fusilier Rigby as he returned to barracks

Lee Rigby murder trial: 'Great' Islam is not in trial, jurors told, as judge says nothing in Michael Adebolajo's evidence amounts to a murder charge defence

Prosecutor Richard Whittam says what the men did was 'indefensible in the law of this country'

Here’s looking at yew: the Borrowdale trees

Tales from the Trees: Borrowdale Yews, Cumbria - Wordsworth's ancient yews live on in England's lakeland

The continuous ridge of russet, stone-strewn lakeland mountain encircles a valley floor as flat as a paddy field. Lights of farms are beginning to spark and the cries of tawny owls reverberate around the bowl of darkening fells. In the distance, sunset pinks the snow-dusted peak of Glaramara. It is a suitable stage to approach the most notable trees of northern England.

Bethlehem: a Christmas poem, By Carol Ann Duffy: Book review

The Nativity is sensuously captured by the Poet Laureate

American smoke: Journeys to the End of the Light, By Iain Sinclair: Book review

An Englishman crosses the Atlantic in search of the Beat generation heroes of his youth on a circuitous and magical tour

Please don't bury me in a skyscraper

An architect has brought us perilously close to a world where morgues tower upwards

David Traill

Glasgow helicopter crash: Tributes paid to victims - 'a beautiful friend' and a 'highly professional' pilot

Tributes were paid today to victims of the Glasgow police helicopter crash, including the “very pleasant” and “highly professional” pilot, “a smashing lad” who helped his daughter to become a Scottish international footballer, and “a beautiful friend”.

Emily Dickenson: A Literary Life, By Linda Wagner-Martin - Review

Was Emily Dickinson a recluse or a “joyous aunt”? Did she absent herself from the household to work on her poetry, or because she was an epileptic, ashamed of her condition? Is there a clue when she writes in 1869 to Colonel Thomas Wentworth Higginson, perceived by many to be the “Master” of her earlier poems, that “I do not cross my Father’s ground to any House or town”?

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Isis in Syria: A general reveals the lack of communication with the US - and his country's awkward relationship with their allies-by-default

A Syrian general speaks

A senior officer of Bashar al-Assad’s regime talks to Robert Fisk about his army’s brutal struggle with Isis, in a dirty war whose challenges include widespread atrocities
‘A bit of a shock...’ Cambridge economist with Glasgow roots becomes Zambia’s acting President

‘A bit of a shock...’ Economist with Glasgow roots becomes Zambia’s acting President

Guy Scott's predecessor, Michael Sata, died in a London hospital this week after a lengthy illness
Fall of the Berlin Wall: History catches up with Erich Honecker - the East German leader who praised the Iron Curtain and claimed it prevented a Third World War

Fall of the Berlin Wall

History catches up with Erich Honecker - the East German leader who praised the Iron Curtain and claimed it prevented a Third World War
How to turn your mobile phone into easy money

Turn your mobile phone into easy money

There are 90 million unused mobiles in the UK, which would be worth £7bn if we cashed them in, says David Crookes
Independent writers remember their Saturday jobs:

Independent writers remember their Saturday jobs

"I have never regarded anything I have done in "the media" as a proper job"
Lyricist Richard Thomas shares his 11-step recipe for creating a hit West End musical

11-step recipe for creating a West End hit

Richard Thomas, the lyricist behind the Jerry Springer and Anna Nicole Smith operas, explains how Bob Dylan, 'Breaking Bad' and even Noam Chomsky inspired his songbook for the new musical 'Made in Dagenham'
Tonke Dragt's The Letter for the King has finally been translated into English ... 50 years on

Buried treasure: The Letter for the King

The coming-of-age tale about a boy and his mission to save a mythical kingdom has sold a million copies since it was written by an eccentric Dutchwoman in 1962. Yet until last year, no one had read it in English
Can instilling a sense of entrepreneurship in pupils have a positive effect on their learning?

The school that means business

Richard Garner heads to Lancashire, where developing the 'dragons' of the future is also helping one community academy to achieve its educational goals
10 best tablets

The world in your pocket: 10 best tablets

They’re thin, they’re light, you can use them for work on the move or keeping entertained
Lutz Pfannenstiel: The goalkeeper who gave up Bayern Munich for the Crazy Gang, Bradford and a whirlwind trawl across continents

Lutz Pfannenstiel interview

The goalkeeper who gave up Bayern Munich for the Crazy Gang, Bradford and a whirlwind trawl across continents
Pete Jenson: Popular Jürgen Klopp can reignite Borussia Dortmund’s season with visit to Bayern Munich

Pete Jenson's a Different League

Popular Klopp can reignite Dortmund’s season with visit to Bayern
John Cantlie video proves that Isis expects victory in Kobani

Cantlie video proves that Isis expects victory in Kobani

The use of the British hostage demonstrates once again the militants' skill and originality in conducting a propaganda war, says Patrick Cockburn
The killer instinct: The man who helps students spot potential murderers

The killer instinct

Phil Chalmers travels the US warning students how to spot possible future murderers, but can his contentious methods really stop the bloodshed?
Clothing the gap: A new exhibition celebrates women who stood apart from the fashion herd

Clothing the gap

A new exhibition celebrates women who stood apart from the fashion herd
Fall of the Berlin Wall: Goodbye to all that - the lost world beyond the Iron Curtain

The Fall of the Berlin Wall

Goodbye to all that - the lost world beyond the Iron Curtain