New haibun

Do they still sit and dream on the Parkinson Steps?

Past the late night Warsaw Stores at the end of the road, across the street from the Sikh temple by the traffic lights. Did the sign in that cafe really say Only one fork per plate ? Later, sitting around the kitchen fireplace, at the house we shared off the Chapeltown Road, we’d make French toast, drink cheap black coffee and watch unwanted lecture notes burn in the open grate, as we’d talk long into the night… about back-to-backs, Hunslett legs and the Quarry Hill flats.

You were reading medicine, I was studying politics but that was the day before yesterday – half a lifetime ago when we were both still so young and cool and wild and free.We’ve long since fallen from each other’s radar screens. You never found that cure for cancer, I never changed the world. It’s been over thirty years since I last made French toast – and I don’t take my coffee black anymore.

back for a class reunion
the only face I recognise is mine

• OK, this is a bit of a cheat as it's by the editor Charles Christian however it was originally published by Blithe Spirit in June 2006

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Three concrete poems/calligrams by Christopher Major


                                       ;;;;;;;;    ;;;;;;;

  not only the first line of a poem but also the horizon  

– – – – – – – – –

Breakup (2007)
Is that my mobile?”
“Hang on darling,
wait a minute.”
“Give it to me.”

message opening
“Ohhhh Shite.”

– – – – – – – – –

After Rehab
Dont worry.Its only an odd line……………..

• Christopher Major lives in Staffordshire where he's training to be a psychiatric nurse. His poems have appeared in many UK print mags including Pennine Platform, Outposts, Poetry Nottingham and Sepia, as well as a number of online zines.

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Two prose poems by Sam Osborne

Getting ready to go running I look outside say I’m not sure it’s raining. Don’t be a wuss, you say. I say remember my uncle Terry? Remember? Shit, you say, I remember. Slipped off the curb and bus broke his head, I say. I remember, you say, and still you tie your laces.
        In rain we run and thud thud thud I think of uncle Terry screaming on the inside not the out as rubber crushed his mouth tight shut. You hit the pavement hard not thinking of uncle Terry listening to shit on your iPod setting pace too fast for me I stop and walk a bit. A bus goes past I edge towards the hedge but you I see you balancing on the pavement edge and getting splashed and honked by passing cars and still you run and I turn back.
        You say what happened? You’re coming through the door all wet rain dripping from your ears. I’m sitting in the armchair reading coffee on the arm I say I thought of uncle Terry and couldn’t help myself. You say you been crying? I say no it’s the rain I’ve been reading. Reading what? you say, you’re drying yourself with the bath towel we share. I say a book I got from this woman in the street. You say, about? I say, about inner peace and read on, on, shut the noise right out.

– – – – – – – – –

You are you. Sitting, legs up crossed at the ankles on the armchair arm, arms folded around thighs, eyes locked fixed firm at opening scenes of Holby City. You are always who you are. In sleep with arms tucked back behind head and lips letting dry air dry the tongue and faint snore rising you are still you floating at the ceiling’s height in my head. You. At midnight you are you. At dawn you are still you, and you stir as I button my shirt and your arms are out eyes prised open like cracks and arms around me warm breath like sleep you are always, always, always. I leave for work you are you, sat up propped against pillows tea at lips and sip after sip makes the sound that is you, is your sound, and the smack of your lips and your kiss on my fingers is you saying bye without words. You are you. Sitting, legs up crossed at knees now arms behind head as I grab your hand pull you you’re you, and I’m me, and you’re you.

• Sam Osborne is a 23 year old writer living in South West London his wife. he is currently studying on the University of Kent's Creative Writing MA and has had work published in several of the university's anthologies. He has also recently read a short story for Tales of the Decongested and has work forthcoming in Litro.

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Odious Explosion – a haibun by Zane Parks

Odious Explosion
Right in the middle of social studies class, I fart. Loudly. I'm mortified. A moment of stunned silence. But then relief. The class clown claims it as his own. Everybody laughs.
cat on the mantle
I catch the buddha
in his fall

• Zane Parks writes about his interest in haiku, tanka, haibun and similar Japanese forms on his website at

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