Stephen Daniels

 

 

 

Grounded

Yesterday when we were 9,
we stole a real imaginary lorry
that smelled of circus.

It had an elephant engine
with a flame-juggler sound.
It had unicycle seats
and lion-tamer windows
which we stole together
but stopped before the trapeze started.

Then we saw the shadow runners.

A tight-rope chase caught us
with one leg over the fence
and the other not.

An ankle-drag pull
and we’re chained to the big-top prison
waiting for acrobats to take us home.
Made to place our heads
into the roaring mouth of our lion angry Mum.

Our punishment, a ringmaster ear-clip
and a bedroom full of sad clown faces.

 

 

 

 

Stephen Daniels was born in Swindon, England in 1980. He is a marketing director, the editor of Amaryllis Poetry. His poetry has been published in various online magazines and websites. Find out more here www.stephenkirkdaniels.com @stephendaniels

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Niall Bourke

 

 

 

Lord Knows I Can Be Cruel

And that morning, the type of morning
for putting the neighbour’s post in the bin
and you’d ate the last heel of bread,
I chose my words, whetting them in my mouth
so they came out edged.
I chose them so they posted out flat
and cornered  like the tray under the toaster
that collects the crumbs and I delivered them
in between your fourth and fifth ribs
like I was sliding in that rusty crumb-tray
to collect the little croutons of your heart.

 

 

 

 

Niall Bourke is originally from Kilkenny in Ireland but currently lives in London where he teaches English Literature. He is has just finished an MA in creative writing at Goldsmiths university of London. He writes both poetry and prose and has been published in a number of journals and magazines including The Galway Review, The Irish Literary Times, Southbank Poetry, Three Drops From A Cauldron, Prole, Holdfast Magazine and Roadside Fiction. He was shortlisted for the 2015 Over The Edge New Writer Of The Year award for both poetry and fiction.  He is currently working towards his first collection.

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Helen Kay

 

 

 

An Interesting Case of Auditory Processing Difficulty   

A writer reckons words are friends.
He clearly has not met da gangstas
muscling in on the mother son trip
to an ear-splitting Arndale noodle bar.

All she did was point out Forsyth’s
through a snotty Metrobus window.
‘Look, there’s a lot of instruments.’
He replied, ‘Wha’? A lot of insulants?’

Ok, so she thought he said ‘insolence’.
What he really meant was insulation.

She blames this confusion on a baby
next to them who kept crying mama
and the creased, lip balm mother
who kept crying, shut up, shut up!

In Forsyth’s, the yawning ukeles
and smug saxes in braces sneered,
so she asked about GCSE’s. He replied
with silence. Or was that insolence?

 

 

 

Helen Kay has written poems about chickens and a pamphlet full of them was published this year by Indigo Dreams.  Helen comes from a onesie free household and is a dyslexia tutor.

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Angelee Deodhar

 
Segue

Our fast train stops just outside the station. On the abandoned weed littered railway track, smoke strands from a sadhu’s chulha drift past a sinking sun. A chorus of mynahs joins the cacophony of crows. The cantonment junction where my dad, a doctor in the Army was posted five decades ago is just half a kilometer away.

Now as the train moves forward to stop at Ambala, on the station I see stacked olive green holdalls, black trunks and crates with army numbers and names painted in white and soldiers in battle camouflage drinking tea. The A.H. Wheeler’s bookshop, a bookstore chain founded in 1887, operating from railway stations is still  there. I remember buying Somerset Maugham’s The Magician.

As we begin to move from the opposite train a child calls ‘bye bye train’ and I wave and call back’ bye bye child’.

worry stones –
blue marbles tinkle
in my pocket

 

 

 

Angelee Deodhar, an eye surgeon by profession is a haiku poet, translator, and artist. She lives and works in Chandigarh, India.  Her haiku/haibun/haiga have been published internationally in various books and journals,  and her work can be viewed on many websites.

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Bruce McRae

 

 

 

Word

A word under a mountain
or hid behind the woodstove.
A word against deviltry,
a hypothetical construction
spoken by a trousered ape.

A word that means something
other than what it means.
Graced with veins and speckles.
With pieces torn out of it.

A word in conjunction
with another word.
You say it and it stays said,
though it can never be written.

The homesick word,
overwrought with describing itself,
pleading for absolution.

Words foregoing the alphabet
and changing into names,
into numbers and colours,
into pictures blurred by sentiment.

Look at this word a long time,
an intellectual exercise.
Read into it what you want,
definition a shackle,
every word a lip split.
Every word a bloody mouthful.

 

 

 

Pushcart nominee Bruce McRae is a Canadian musician with over 900 poems published internationally, including Poetry.com, Rattle and The North American Review. His first book, The So-Called Sonnets is available via Silenced Press and Amazon. To see and hear more poems go to : BruceMcRaePoetry

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Michael Estabrook

 

 

 

 

temptation

Whenever he finds a spider in the house
he leaves it alone but sometimes one shows up
in the bedroom and his wife says “either
that spider goes or I do” and at times he’s tempted
to leave the damn thing right where she found it.

 

 

 

 

Michael Estabrook:
Retired now working around the yard
and writing more poems or trying to anyhow.
Noticed 2 Cooper’s hawks staked out in our yard
or above it I should say
explains the disappearing chipmunks.

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Jinny Fisher

 

 

 

The Scarf

This is the scarf
Miranda makes.
It is the scarf
that she knits
and knits
and knits
in strips
of colours
she picks
from the current
selection
of wool
in the hospice
shop
and that flows
from the chest
at the end
of her bed
down the stairs
through the hall
to the couch
in the lounge
where she sits
with her cat
by her side.
This is the scarf
that she stores
in a ball
that each year
she unrolls
over and
over and
over along
the landing
to measure
and log
her persistence
in knitting
in knitting.

 

 

 

 

Jinny Fisher is a psychoanalytic psychotherapist who began writing poems a few years ago. She lives in Somerset and is a member of Juncture 25 and Wells Fountain Poets. Magazine publications include The Interpreter’s House, Under the Radar, and Prole.

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