Monthly Archives: July 2016

Kerri Shying R # 34 Strangelove


Prrrrr pep pip
prrrrr pip pip
bird’s call
beguile the swan tattoo
from off my arm

Prrr pep pip
come join us in the air

the warm rain of a shower
boxed in with railings
gives that colour patch
her wash

to lunch
rinse of booze inside me
setting free the squawkers

nip and play amid plates
between bottles
hands all ages tossing up the plans

a day is still a day
what weight the world

what weight are all
of my cathedrals here

how light the throat of birds
keen-eyed for the lizard skins
with the evening meal.

Robert Verdon, #223, waiting to wake

tumbling down into low gear and low country
that sea-line in the distance
heads full of what we will do, chips and real fish,
magic encounters leading to new lives, eternal lives,
magical cities driven through as we hug the two-lane
highway round spirituous bends, heading lower, down
the coast as the saying goes, engine roaring with
excitement startling the piebald cows, scattering dust
from the verge occasionally as we play I Spy or is it me
at 24 playing it on my own, living on in the dream world that
has been my lifelong sanctuary and prison, so vivid it seems
more real than the real world with its jobs and associated garbage,
holiday or quest, I do not know, the sun is a red glow through a wine bottle,
lying on rippled white sand and waiting for my father, waiting for
my 20th birthday, waiting to leave home, waiting waiting waiting
checkmating myself, these days so often I think what is the point where
is there to go I am too old have achieved nothing a hair-spring without a
watch and they don’t use them any more anyway, other times I might be
at the centre of a revolution, all of it is imaginary nonsense I should have
been a plumber at least money to do what I want, not other point to existence in
this godforsaken why why why are we waiting waiting for death waiting for
forgetfulness waiting to wake

Moyra Donaldson – What would you like for your birthday? # 26
What Would you Like for your Birthday?

A fulgurite; some Northern Lights
and a pod of whales;
one hundred years of wisteria
all over my house; a bunch
of gathered rosebuds;
some fox-proof chickens.

Nathanael O’Reilly #31 Resorting

A band plays reggae
and calypso beside the pool

while sunbathing adults
sip sapphire margaritas

kids play with beach balls
teens parade around the water’s edge

lifeguards nod in time
step back and forth poolside

grandparents take refuge
in the shade of turquoise

yellow and orange umbrellas
boys sword-fight with noodles

parents survey toddlers in the shallows
mothers rub sunscreen

into impatient young skin
palm fronds undulate lazily

like tipsy dancers
shadows slide slowly across the pool

tween girls strut like teen girls
white clouds stagnate in blue skies

lethargic as humans amidst humidity
tween boys flex muscles

present only in dreams
hairy-backed men feign Chewbacca cool

women check out other women
scanning for imperfections

middle-aged men chase youth
down the waterslide

Julie McElhone #30 Table with Contents

The kitchen table where we meet dependable she and I
and have breakfast and teach and argue and storm away from
and come back to and learn and make craft and pile books
an often lonely answer

to the call of things. Those, those things,
pose like undisciplined acrobats,
the debris of our day sometimes in rhyming couplets:
there’s a bus pass
and a drinking glass
a cut-up toilet roll
in a wooden bowl
a tiger key ring
and a ball of string

you get the picture: unruly data
shape shifting reliefs of each other.

Robert Verdon, #222, Ainslie Backyard

birdlife comes for its breakfast every morning
the magpies are my friends, I give them porridge and apple-pie
the cats don’t bother them
they don’t yet have names
— unless they have names for me
‛soft touch’, ‛soft head’, ‛human’

the currawongs are warier
they eat surreptitiously
as if about to be chased off

the mynahs don’t beg just screech at the cats
one ate one once
about 2010 I think
the elephants of the skies

pee-wees are rare
and the crested pigeons never come
nevertheless I spend too long feeding
and talking like I am mad

they cock their heads
scattered across the lawn like rosary beads
tossed by an apostate

Rob Harle #29 Dancing In The Light

Delving into my brain cells
neurons of revelation
explicitly indicated
a virtual body is essential;
without artificial bits attached
No Extended Life Support,
such is the expenditure of neural systems.
Dynamic neural labyrinths editing
complex interconnections of memory,
memory alone clones our memory.
Never underestimate the unseen,
the omnipotence of data molecules
hiding in quantum waves
ready for consequent regeneration,
regeneration of the ultimate goal
the realisation that everything is light,
photons and pixels
dancing in harmony,
a Waltz in the zero-point-field.

“If that’s all there is, then let’s keep dancing.”

Susan Hawthorne #211 cyan

colour code for printing blue
Kyane is older than us all
river home for a Sicilian nymph

but she was no nymphette
she stood up to the death god
abducting her friend Persephone

called out to him stop this is no way
to gain a wife let her go Hades
in self rapture ruptured earth

Kyane stood in silence and wept
and wept yet more and with each
new tear her body dissolved into fluid

her hair blue as the sea melted
limb by limb shoulder by arm
she wasted away in grief for her friend

when Demeter arrived all speech
had been swallowed into liquid
no words just bubbling and burbling

but she showed to Demeter the sash
of Persephone and Demeter knew
the truth of her daughter’s abduction

in Syracuse they remember Kyane
her transformation her metamorphosis
from young girl to sacred blue river

Nathanael O’Reilly #30 Ice Cream Connection

Ice Cream Connection

At Ken’s Ice Cream on Route 66
in Tucumcari, New Mexico,
we meet a retired couple
from Birmingham traversing
the mother road, unperturbed
by the decay, the boarded-up
abandoned motels, gas stations
diners, restaurants and bars,
possessing the ability to see
past the present into the past,
to ignore depressing reality
and envision the glory days.
We sit in adjoining booths,
talk about shared experiences,
quickly learn that we were all
in the same English town last
New Year’s Eve and agree
that the bloody rain ruined
the evening. We share travel
recommendations, compare
notes regarding theme parks,
hotels, cities and towns
from Los Angeles to Chicago
as we eat our ice creams
and enjoy a brief reprieve
from driving. After the last
drops of ice cream are licked
from fingers we shake hands,
part without even exchanging
names, resume our journeys
into the past and the future.

Kerri Shying R # 32 Birthplace


We all wished we might be someone else
so we were

and then those


for a time it sat tight like tongue and groove joints
the masons with the aprons

fitting in
leaving out

the kerbside collection of junk dna
the forebears lesser smaller darker

ill-fitting parties to the big fat picture
our great nation

we let it ride
us down

even then we knew
where being that would go.

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