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Showing posts from May, 2020

Meeting on a summer evening by Zoe Brooks

Between garden and suburban skip upon the grey-lichened fence  a stag beetle in elegant pose, brown and green in his Black Prince armour. Shocked by the size of him,  we stopped to watch as the antlered knight in predatory stance swept the air about his head, as soldiers cut sandbags to remove the guts of enemies hidden there. Meanwhile slowly beneath our notice blacker and larger than her mate another climbed the nearby tree. --- Zoe Brooks' first collection  Owl Unbound  will be published by Indigo Dreams Publishing in 2020. She has been published by many magazines, including Dreamcatcher, Prole, Obsessed With Pipework, Fenland Reed, and The Rialto. Her long poem  Fool's Paradise  received the EPIC award for best poetry ebook 2013. Zoe is from Gloucestershire and helps the Cheltenham Poetry Festival with community development, having previously worked with deprived communities in London and Oxford. 

How things fall between the gaps by Emma Lee

Deliberately: the gap I made between her desk and mine so her clumsiness wouldn’t sprawl over my work. The crowded, unnumbered list tipped upside down by a car’s exhaust problem and moved appointment. In the diary with pencilled entries, the cluttered inbox, the sticky note that failed to stick, the wheel that didn’t squeak, that project that kept getting postponed, that poem which needed  more research that revealed even more research was needed. The song that always seems to get passed over in shuffle mode. When a busy person is asked to do one more thing and there’s always one more thing. When it takes four hours to compose a text because it has to be unmisinterpretable. --- Emma Lee’s publications include “The Significance of a Dress” (Arachne, 2020) and "Ghosts in the Desert" (IDP, 2015). She co-edited “Over Land, Over Sea,” (Five Leaves, UK, 2015), is Poetry Reviews Editor for The Blue Nib, reviews for magazines and blogs at  htt

Stage Mirror by Molly Eyre

My expectancy is both-sided, one surface joy and the other obliterate. I miss you from my lungs to the bottom of my bare feet. The daylight pools on the wood, still sticky-damp from the varnished coat you gave it, cursing; your hair repeatedly scrubbed behind an ear. I breathe it in, that little bubble of anticipation in my chest. --- Molly Eyre (no relation to Jane) is a UK based poet with a fondness for friendship, fun, and alliteration.

Regina Cordium by Brian Comber

just after dawn and Lizzie Siddal throws back her head, the air crackles about her shoulders, his breath is rank from neglect as he settles her pose, while costers swear in the square below, shouting smut like a pack, drizzle blends with steam from the viaduct, London settles to work;  she picks at the oils beneath her fingernails and longs to be at her table to paint herself out, with a nest of opiate pearls he imagines her in rich fabrics, a parable of auburn, russet, sunset, titian taking her hair in his stained fingers looking for the colours beyond, faceless men press in, asking for the model, as if viewing the great whale at Cromwell Road, he springs up and paces the floor, places a lily in her waiting hand, she imagines a poker, hours pass they near the surface, he as a duckling, she a pike. --- Brian lives in Worcestershire England and writes poems and short stories, performing occasionally at Worcester spok