Jody Porter




Café Auteur

On every café commute your Godard eye
transmutes the mannequins of lingerie windows
into beings just like us (with regrets and sorrows and loves).

You command a New Wave brilliance for things
in each of your photographs. I feel terribly mortal
in the company of your beauty.

A melodrama of lipstick upon a cup
with a backdropped fringe of ivy spilling black and white.
An unspecial bird made special mid-flight.

You’re more artist than I will ever be.
Who was it by breaking made
your cinematic heart?





Jody Porter is poetry editor of the Morning Star. His work has appeared in Magma, Best British Poetry and elsewhere. Originally from Essex, he now lives in London where he runs events at the Stoke Newington Literary Festival. This is his website:

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Mark Totterdell




Temple Meads

Beneath vast curves of brick and iron and stone,
I bend towards the small black tablet,
trying to establish a connection.

His works are mighty; the fabled bridge
that spans nothing, the great ship that came home.
Now, everything is shrunk. I search for links.

On an old map it’s shown as simple fields.
There’ll be some story of gods and nature
that a few clicks will find. My finger’s poised.




Mark Totterdell’s poems have appeared in magazines including Ambit, The Interpreter’s House, The Rialto and Stand. His collection This Patter of Traces was published by Oversteps Books in 2014. Website;

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Gregg Dotoli





we are on the Isthmus
past-present soil
growing crowded and carbon-hot
is that tide higher?
where is that lake?
those polar bears swim
but aren’t walruses
scary-odd December-spring day
in the big baked Apple
I like Florida, but
it’s coming to me
not me to it




Gregg Dotoli lives in New York City area and has studied English at Seton Hall University. He works as a white hat hacker, but his first love is the arts.  His poems have been published in, Quail Bell Magazine, The Four Quarters Magazine, Calvary Cross, Dead Snakes, Halcyon Magazine, Allegro Magazine, the Mad Swirl, Voices Project, Writing Raw and Down in the Dirt.

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Charles G Lauder




Late in the Evening
The rapid tap of rain
is hands on skin,

ground hard
from the day’s dry tread

made loose by this
roof-tap down-piss.

Lost amidst slap-dash
dots and splashes,

nothing to be seen
but still a sense

of something relayed
in the rhythm,

like code passed
between posts,

between a tree falling
and an ear waiting,

an old know,
that we are never alone.




Charles G Lauder Jr is from Texas and has lived in south Leicestershire since 2000. His poems have appeared internationally, and his pamphlet Bleeds was published in 2012. He is the Assistant Editor for The Interpreter’s House.

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Sue Birchenough




after Landscape with the fall of Icarus

she love
dem pleat on he peasant frock
an’ dem pleat he ploughin’

an’ dem curve sail, an’ river moute,
an’ dem plough pleat curvin’
she love
do mes tic:
sheep an’ shepherd home ly,
an’ dem cliff an’ rock pretendin’
she too damn love up
an’ never see poor icaru’






Sue Birchenough lives in Buxton, and is a regular visitor to Manchester poetry events. She has been published in English PEN anthology Catechism ,  PBS press anthology No Spy Zone,  Like This Press anthology  Austin Bronte Shakespeare  and KFS anthology  Yesterday’s Music Todayin red ceilings , street cake, ink sweat and tears, m58, and forthcoming in zimZalla. She was highly commended  in 2014 erbacce poetry  competition. Her pamphlet  ‘housework ‘  is to be published by KFS this year.

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Matthew Friday



Banana Man on the Bakerloo Line

With the delicate, cautious care
of a first-time mother
reaching for her crying baby,
the man on the Bakerloo line train
tip-toes his fingers into his bag.
With surgical precision he extracts
a blackening, limp banana skin.
Not looking up once from his paper,
he sneaks his hand behind his back
and deposits the skin there.
Reading continues
as if nothing has happened,
just like the cigarette butt flickers,
the chewing gum spitters
the wrapping-paper discarders.
I should speak out, start a revolution
of responsible rubbish but
like the million of tongue-less
citizens, I just watch, and now
dump these words on this page.




Matthew Friday is a writer, professional storyteller and primary school teacher. By all means check out the results

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Paul Tarragó





Arguments for an empty room



It is a space that shapes, a boon, an asset. A container, a repository, a suggestion. And we can now confidently add to that: an inheritance, an investment, an aid – exclusively and uniquely purpose-driven.



Room or shed? Building or box? Portal or fully sealed unit?


These sound like choices, but they’re not. They’re decisions.


A: At this stage I’d consider them options. In our bracket, and at our age, they’re options. Clearly.


B: Sealed unit?


A: Okay, that’s the exception. That’s talking new-build. Unless you’re doing a portal conversion – if you can do that from the outside.


B: Doors swing inwards, so it’s doubtful. Door swings in: you lose your emptiness.


A: Is that the way it works, though? The door’s part of the room, surely, so how can it ‘enter’ the room?


B: It defines the boundary – the room starts where the wall ends. If it falls or swings in it enters.


A: And if the light fitting were to fall from the ceiling? Is that entering? It’s already in the room.


B: Then it can’t enter. It would have to exit first.


A: For how long? How long before it became a thing from outside rather than part-of-the-room?


B: It would have to do more than just swing in and out. It would have to rest outside for a period.


A: Rest or be lodged?


B: It’s inanimate; I can’t see it leaving the room and returning under its own agency. It would most likely be accompanied.


A: If it were to swing OUT then part of it would remain inside, so it would be both outside and inside simultaneously. It would be in between states.


B: But, again, accompanied. And the likelihood of a light fitting reaching a doorway and still remaining attached to the ceiling must be low, very low.




Points of clarification:


If the ceiling rose were positioned sufficiently closer to the door than the opposite wall, and the flex were long, then it would accommodate such an arc.

If the ceiling were very high, and the doorframe very tall, then this would further add to the potential of such an action.

To set it in motion there would need to be a sudden crumbling – of the hole in the ceiling on the side adjacent to the door.


If these conditions are present: it could happen.



Next time: If you remove the walls does the empty space cease to exist?



Paul Tarragó is an experimental filmmaker and writer living in London. Recent writings appear in The Wrong Quarterly, 2HB, decomP magazinE, SO MUCH FOR FREE SCHOOL, ETC. (Five Years), as well as his short story collection – The Mascot Moth and several other pieces. He’s currently working on a second collection entitled The Water Rabbits

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