Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Power of Eves

Pull a scarlet shawl

around your shoulders


Know you are important

wear that cow mask


Dodge the grabbing hand

the pull on your blouse


your dupatta

your bag


Protest a curfew

police baton charge


Avoid Holi crowds

hit the men groping


your buttock

your breast


Name it sexual assault

Name male bullies


Protest putrid police

Unite as stalwart women


march together

shoulder to shoulder


© Lavinia Kumar

India’s female students say ‘to hell with it, we won’t stand for molesting and Eve-teasing’

Lavinia Kumar has a new poetry book, The Celtic Fisherman’s Wife: A Druid Life, it can be found on Amazon (US & UK).

Monday, 16 October 2017

The Awesome Wind, Northern California, 2017

Our world’s on fire. The wind blusters across
the countryside, taunting us to fear its awesome
power, sparks the ember, turns everything to char.
Fire lives inside the tree, hollows out the core.
A squirrel clings to a branch. We watch as fire
inhales, then spits out fur and bone. No relief
until the wind calms and fire sates its hunger.
The sky is not a sky we’ve ever known. Ash rains
down spectral and acrid. We can hardly breathe.

© Nancy Scott

Some evacuation orders lifted in Northern California fires; death toll at 40

Nancy Scott is author of nine books of poetry. Many of her poems deal with social justice issues.
She resides in New Jersey, USA.

Sunday, 15 October 2017

Fox in Stocks

Look, sir! Look, sir! Britain mocks, sir.
Let's play tricks with Dr Fox, sir.
Ticks and tocks from Brexit clocks:
British tradesmen shake in socks.
Brexit tricks and Brexit shticks:
Fox gets kicks and gets on wicks.
Brits in shocks and Fox in stocks:
Fox locked up where no-one knocks.
Britain mocks at Dr Fox:
Fox with nix and in his box.

© Philip Challinor

Liam Fox ridiculed for being only member of new UK board of trade

Philip Challinor posts fiction, satire and assorted grumbles on his blog: The Curmudgeon. His longer fiction is available here.

Saturday, 14 October 2017

Off Your Knees

Keep politics out of sport
Black lives may matter
but all that matters here
is the score

Keep politics out of football
because standing up for the national anthem
is not political
but kneeling for it is

Keep politics off the pitch
Offence and defence
are matters for the field of play
not for the field of struggle

Keep politics out of sport
Do your duty, entertain
don't complain
Forget those folk who can't be at the game

Play for us, throw for us
put on a show for us
Tackle them hard for us
run forty yards for us
Deliver our sport for us
don't ask for support from us

Keep politics out of sport
Keep your protests out of our faces
Know your places
Touch down your ball, run down your races

Stuff justice, think of your career
We just want a score to cheer

Get off your knees
and stand up

© Janine Booth

President Trump tells Fox News: NFL should have suspended Colin Kaepernick

Janine Booth is a Marxist motormouth, who grinds out poems serious and humorous, for the page and the stage. She has had three slim volumes of poetry published, and posts poems and political polemics at http://www.janinebooth.com/

Friday, 13 October 2017

The British Dream

Do you dream British?


Do you wake up thinking Jerusalem and jam

Wipe your plates with royal faced tea towels?

And take the bright red bus to a dull, dull office?


#TheBritishDream: when u think 'it is a coat day' so u wear a coat and it turns out it was indeed a coat day and u are a good temperature


Do you start your day with a pinky-fingered Earl Grey or a

builder’s brew stirred with a splash of fake cockney

and just a small spoon of casual xenophobia?


#TheBritishDream: slightly better weather on bank holidays


Do dreams have a nationality?

Does Uncle Sam prod pillows and

whisper sweet everythings about all those amendments?


#TheBritishDream: getting through a self-checkout without ‘unexpected item’ in the bagging area


Does the right to bear arms

comfort and cuddle our cousins as they

zee zee zee til morning?


#TheBritishDeam: a channel that plays Del-boy falling through the bar 24 hours a day


Do they bounce outta bed, with their cuppa Jo

And go off in their Cadillac in the pursuit of

life, liberty and happiness?



#TheBritishDream: finding a Kit Kat with no wafer in it

#TheBritishDream: sausages and mash Desperate-Dan style

#TheBritishDream: a nice cup of tea and a sit down

#TheBritishDream: changing queues and finding the one you have moved to, does, in fact, move faster

#TheBritishDream: doing an entire speech without interruption, without pranksters, without heckling, without coughing, without letters droppin

of

© Jane Slavin

Theresa May offers the ‘British dream’ but speech turns into a nightmare

Jane Slavin is a former journalist, now council press officer, living in Plymouth. In her spare time, she is falling in love with words again by making her own stuff up!

Thursday, 12 October 2017

When will this Madness end?

Yet again we turn on the TV
And witness horrible scenes
Of unparalleled violence, hatred, and despair

An old man consumed by his own demons
Opens fire from a hotel room
Killing 58 people injuring hundreds
In Las Vegas, Sin City

And the cry goes out throughout the land
Why yet again this tragedy?

The usual suspects are rounded up
It's the culture, stupid, cry the conservative voices

Guns are the price of our freedom
Guns Don’t Kill People
The only solution is more guns for everyone

The only solution for a bad guy with a gun
Is a good guy with a gun
An armed society is a polite society

No, it's the guns, cry the liberal pundits
We must confiscate the guns
Ban Assault weapons
And join the rest of the world
Where such carnage does not occur

And we sit around and argue
Knowing that there will be a next time
And another time and time and time again
Until the end of time

What is the sickness in our souls
That allows for this hatred to fester so
Deep within the minds of our killers

Nothing will change
Until we confront the evil
That lurks deep within each of us

There will be another Las Vegas
Soon enough

© Jake Aller

Families across 14 states unite in grief after Las Vegas shooting

John (“Jake”) Cosmos Aller is a novelist, poet and former Foreign Service officer. He served 27 years with the U.S. State Department, in ten countries. An aspiring novelist for several years, he has completed four novels, and has published his poetry and fiction in over 25 literary journals. Jake grew up in Berkeley, California.

Wednesday, 11 October 2017

Get a Grip

It's World Mental Health Day, so

SNAP OUT OF IT
Snap out of taking orders
Snap out of blame
Snap out of 'disorders'
Snap out of shame
Snap out of austerity
Snap out of stressors
Snap out of poverty
Snap out of pressures
Snap out of 'raising awareness'
and start raising hell
This system's sick
It isn't well

GET A FUCKING GRIP
Clench your fists and bite your lip
Get a grip on broken minds and
Ask yourself what is breaking them
Get a grip on that banner pole
On that placard stick
Stop the traffic
Shout and kick
Take my tip
Get a grip

CALM DOWN
and chill out
Never spit your pill out
Chin up, man up
Pull everything you can up
Raise your hand up
Make your point and stand up

FFS, PULL YOURSELF TOGETHER
Pull our allies together
Pull our demands together
Pull our hands and arms together
Pull together all our resources
Our battling and campaigning forces
Pull ourselves together
Solidarity forever

© Janine Booth


Janine Booth lives in Hackney, East London. She writes and performs poetry, and has had three slim volumes of poetry published. Janine posts poems and political polemics at www.janinebooth.com


Tuesday, 10 October 2017

In the Plot Next to Marilyn

Luminous and always more
than a little sad
her star was rising when his hands fell
on photographs
taken in a stone broke past.
Spread centrefold
no consent sought or given
his ship came home,
in a single night
fifty thousand copies sold.
Now the sallow skin
lighthouse gaze
post box grin
materialise again
wet parted nonagenarian lips
whispering eternity
beside my blonde of blondes, too sweet
an opportunity to miss.

Does this woman have no kin, blood
feminist, humanitarian
shouting down the dead of night
you harda hearin
the chair’s taken.
No one to spirit her to some quiet
unnamed wooded place
and sweeping away
earth stars and leaf litter
lay her down in the diamond dark
among roots of juniper among roots of cedar.

© Clare McCotter

Hugh Hefner arranged to be buried next to Marilyn Monroe and a lot of people think that’s creepy

Clare McCotter’s poetry has appeared in numerous journals including Abridged, Algebra of Owls, Boyne Berries, Crannóg, Cyphers, Envoi, The Galway Review, The Honest Ulsterman, Iota, Moth Magazine, A New Ulster, Revival, The SHOp, The Stinging Fly and The Stony Thursday Book. She also writes haiku, tanka and haibun.

Monday, 9 October 2017

Athenia

The day war began in 1939
A German torpedo sent you
Mortally wounded
To the bottom of the ocean;
A civilian ship, women and children,
Americans, British and others,
Rules broken, no mercy given.

Then the Nazis tried to suggest
That Churchill was responsible,
An evil ploy to draw
America into the war,
But nobody believed them;
The propaganda
Of Goebbels failed.

Today we think we've found you
Two hundred metres down,
We have the equipment now;
Soon an unmanned craft
Will be sent to make sure
It really is you and
Not just another fantasy.

© David Subacchi

Athenia: Is this the wreck of the first British ship torpedoed in WW2?

David Subacchi lives in Wales (UK) where he was born of Italian roots. He studied at the University of Liverpool and has 4 published collections of his English Language poetry: First Cut (2012), Hiding in Shadows (2014), Not Really a Stranger (2016) and A Terrible Beauty (2016) as well as a collection in Welsh: Eglwys Yng Nghremona (2016).

Sunday, 8 October 2017

The Naked Truth

That the Mona Lisa’s smile
hid a secret, we knew all along
and now a recent discovery
has proved that we weren’t wrong.

A sketch has been found
with her face full of mirth
and her body reflecting
the nakedness of birth.

She is amused by the thought
she had posed in the nude
as she wanted to show
that she wasn’t a prude.

But the Art of Leonardo
she also knew was imbued
with a sense of propriety
and not meant to be rude.

So she told the master
that in all honesty
she‘d rather be covered
and recover her modesty.

© Luigi Pagano

'Mona Lisa nude sketch' found in France

Luigi Pagano has published three collections of poems: ‘Idle Thoughts’, ’Reflections’ and ‘Poetry On Tap’. His work has been featured in ABCTales’ magazines,UKAuthors’ anthologies, Poetry24 and several other publications.

Saturday, 7 October 2017

Donald Trump, Our Great Compassionate Dear Leader

As an elderly man falls
In front of him
During a charity dinner event
Hitting his head bleeding out

Quote the MAGA Donald Trump our future dear leader

“It is disgusting. I mean the guy was bleeding
all over the nice marble floor”

Donald Trump the self-proclaimed
saviour of the nation
Could not be bothered to lift a finger

“Thank God for the marines who took out the garbage
But they left a mess on the nice marble floor
And ruined their nice uniforms”
and disrupted a fine dinner

Did he call the grieving family the next day
Of course not
Quote the Great Leader, the Donald
“I forgot to call." That is not his thing at all

And still, I wonder
How such a disgusting excuse
For a human being became
The leader of the greatest nation
On earth

And what it means for the future
Is it proof that we are doomed
That America is in the final stage
Of terminal decline?

Or will Americans take
out the garbage
From the white house?

© Jake Aller

The Time Donald Trump Turned Away in Disgust While a Man Was Bleeding to Death in Front of Him

John (“Jake”) Cosmos Aller is a novelist, poet and former Foreign Service officer. He served 27 years with the U.S. State Department, in ten countries. An aspiring novelist for several years, he has completed four novels, and has published his poetry and fiction in over 25 literary journals. Jake grew up in Berkeley, California.

Friday, 6 October 2017

A Dead Sirte

Once we've cleared the bodies
Once we've dug the graves
And found a space where
Graves aren't already dug
Which won't be easy

Once we've done the digging
Which won't be easy
When the earth's like concrete
And the sun's like glass
And it's mass graves we're digging

Once we've steeled ourselves to the
Mosaic mess of mutilation and said a prayer
Which won't be easy
For we don't know who the bodies
And the body parts belonged to

Once we've finished with the shovels
We can hand over to Boris's
Bright British guys who can't wait
To build a steel glass and concrete
City with mosaics and open space

And water fountains and terrazzas,
Beaches with better sand than ours
Maybe a Formula One race one day
And of course a tasteful memorial
To all the bodies who were people once.

© Charlie Lambert

No 10 rebukes Boris Johnson over Sirte 'dead bodies' comment

Charlie Lambert is a former journalist and sports broadcaster who turned to a different form of media in 2016 when he started writing poetry. He lives in Liverpool.

Thursday, 5 October 2017

LIGO/Virgo

Follow the two eyes of the orange mask,

the wobble, near wink, warp,

deep sockets ready to suck up time,

collide as inner eye, mind's eye

to see beyond sight,

for enlightenment,

a hole so black

even seers feel ripples, waves

to a gravity beyond day or tide,

pulling, rippling, stretching, shrinking –

an energy of two united as one spirit

spinning far from time

the mask falling away to no trick,

but treat, dark as black cherry.

© Lavinia Kumar

New gravitational wave detection shows shape of ripples from black hole collision

Lavinia Kumar has a new poetry book, The Celtic Fisherman’s Wife: A Druid Life, it can be found on Amazon (US & UK).

Wednesday, 4 October 2017

Las Vegas

Gun Controlled


“Gun control ?”

“I controlled it.”

Bought the legal rounds

Bought the bullets screaming loud

The voice of NRA screaming

“That’s what makes America proud”


“Gun controlled

I used it.”

The second amendment

The senators on the hill

The guy who shot to miss and killed

The domestic settled on a hand gun

A boy caught between the cross fire


And now the highest figure

Written in the clouds

Burning at hell’s door

Take away these fire arms

No more.


The Guns Controlled

YOU controlled it

© David Mellor

Las Vegas shooting: Trump dubs killer 'sick and demented'

David Mellor is from Liverpool, England. He found understanding and belief through words, and his work has been aired widely, at the BBC, The Tate, galleries and pubs and everything in between. Discover more about David on his Facebook Page YouTube Twitter: @olunikat


Aftermath  (Sonnet)

Heard shooter, down, and blood, then candle, spree.
Today’s compelling sweetness makes it worse;
Our seeming lean to darkness baffles me:
These acts horrific, repetition's hearse!

Let's sheathe our swords, and listen to small birds;
Note vultures sulking, high on gnarled trees.
Their beaks are how they eat, and never words
That poke and prod like bullets - Pray release!

The challenge now is writing how I feel
While dragging every word with rusted chains
That snarl, beg, delay, repeat – I yield:
Just give us nests with birds, a cleansing rain.

The writer wants to slumber with a dove,
to feel soft wings, no words, consider love.

© Kay Weeks

Nothing Will Change After the Las Vegas Shooting

Kay Weeks worked for 30 years for the US National Parks Service in the area of National Historic Preservation, retiring in 2005. She writes and publishes poetry in the US and the UK.

Tuesday, 3 October 2017

Spanish Lesson

Guardia Civil
know the drill
Drafted in from other places
beating unfamiliar faces

Keepers of the peace
Police

That's the theory:
There and here, we
expect protection
get subjection

Saw that theory
cracked in practice
Dragged and kicked
grabbed and nicked

Keepers of the peace
Police

That facade's
been shattered
Charged and battered
punched and batoned

Washed away in voters' blood
Nipped in Catalunya's bud
Hammered homeward in detention
Spread the word, pay attention

Homework session
Spanish lesson

© Janine Booth

Spain in crisis after police violence in Catalan vote

Janine Booth lives in Hackney, East London, and writes and performs poetry. She has had three slim volumes of poetry published, and posts poems and political polemics at www.janinebooth.com

Monday, 2 October 2017

Hef Listens to Dylan's Blood on the Tracks on his new iPhone and Dies

A gentle little puff blows bubbles all around
my father's lap. I'm tangled up with arms and chest.

Her gentle little puffs whisper in my ear
the unexpected twist in our relationship.

The gentle little puff of my confusion when
she pulls my shorts for morning sex and then we laugh
at clumsy breaths before she puffs those three words
"I appreciate you." I admire lily white
skin and exposure to her two big beautiful
fully attached frontal lobes.

                                   Say hello and that's my children's cue
to wrap around my neck and puff and puff cloud puffs
of requests. I frantically fill buckets with coal size
ideas.

            All these gentle little puffs I never felt.

Gentle little puffs fill this room-of-nothing.

© J.M. Green

Hugh Hefner, Who Built the Playboy Empire and Embodied It, Dies at 91

J.M. Green is the author of two chapbooks, The Novice Angler (Finishing Line Press, 2017) and Super Rich (Pudding House, 2008). Green is a librarian at Xavier University in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Sunday, 1 October 2017

Tricks of the Trade

Whatever Roger says
is written in stone.
Proclaims that his tricks
are within reason
and he wouldn’t dream
of committing treason.
He caustically denies
that he was involved
in meddling and lies.
If asked by the House
about Russian collusion
he’ll be truly upset
by unfounded allusions
and he’ll answer: Niet

© Luigi Pagano

Roger Stone to Tell House Panel He Pulled No Treasonous ‘Trick’

Luigi Pagano has published three collections of poems: ‘Idle Thoughts’, ’Reflections’ and ‘Poetry On Tap’. His work has been featured in ABCTales’ magazines,UKAuthors’ anthologies, Poetry24 and several other publications.

Saturday, 30 September 2017

Dear Lavinia

Shame on your boyfriend!
What’s a little bread knife?
And besides, what, exactly,
did you do?
He said he would tell your mother,
twist the screw,
his fingers going
like a second hand
on the skype screen
just because your habit
was becoming,
becoming,
well, habitual,
though he saw how your hands
twisted on the handle
of the knife
heard you insist you would be
careful.
What a show it must have been,
when you lifted
the laptop,
and wrapped it around his head,
the way you’ll bandage a heart, no doubt,
when you qualify as a surgeon, soon,
your degree an unblemished
badge of honour still
because the judge would not convict
such a beautiful young prodigy
from Oxford.
If only he were as humane towards
the less privileged.
So this vexing day out at court
is just a brief havoc;
it will float out of the window
like light,
light as the blond shine of your hair,
away from the prying eyes
of the university panel,
leaving your character
intact.

© Afric McGlinchey

Why the Oxford stabbing student really is too talented for jail

Afric McGlinchey won the prestigious Hennessy Poetry Award (2011). Her début collection,
The lucky star of hidden things, was published in 2012 by Salmon Poetry.

Friday, 29 September 2017

The End

Old banger, two door, fading red –
hardly the wheels of high-end crime.
Reports of a shooter.

Unmarked cars track along the M5
and when he comes off at 18
and heads off down the Portbury Hundred

the ARVs shoot past, slow down,
box him in,
causing him to stop.

The guns get out,
walk over to his window,
execute the arrest

shots fired – ten.
One way only.
The end.

© Richard Devereux

Man dead after police 'surround car and shoot into it' near Bristol

Richard Devereux belongs to Bristol Stanza. His main themes are Greece, people and politics. His collection Billtells his grandfather’s tale - Private Everyman in Greece in WW1.

Thursday, 28 September 2017

This is the brake

This is the brake, he told me.
The accelerator, here.
This stick in the middle?
We use that to change gear.
This is called the steering wheel.
You turn it left or right.
This is called a clutch, my dear,
and this turns on your lights.

He carried on mansplaining
and, at each child-simple word,
I smiled and nodded briefly
to show that I had heard.
He didn’t know I’d studied
the manuals night and day.
He didn’t know I’d sat inside
the car and learned its way.

He thought this was the first time
I’d heard of brakes and gears,
but I had dreamed that language
and practised it for years.
Not only I, but all my friends.
We’d gossiped hopefulness
and fuelled ourselves with faith
that we would drive the men to yes.

© Fran Hill

Saudi Arabia driving ban on women to be lifted

Fran Hill is a writer and English teacher based in Warwickshire, UK.

Wednesday, 27 September 2017

Menstrual tax

Tax me because I'm a woman

Tax me because I bleed

Make me pay more than men

Pay for their unused seed

My life is hard enough

Without taxing my menstrual flow

A monthly period of blood

A period of mess below

Is a towel a luxury?

According to government it is

But it only affects the Her's

It don't affect the His

What happens when I have no means or cash?

To pay this unequal uneven tax

When I can't afford a tampon or pad

These are everyday facts

This is without the sadness of PMT or PMS

Man has no idea of the pain or the bloody stress

Why would you tax a woman just for being her?

How do you tax a towel that woman is forced to wear?

This taxation is way out of line, unjust and morally wrong

Its time to end this crippling tax

Menstruation's been exploited way too long!

© Robin Welsh

Labour promise free sanitary products for girls and women in bid to tackle 'period poverty'

Robin Welsh writes poems and rhymes daily about all life in general...but mainly politics, human rights and world affairs. Performing at every opportunity he can get, not yet published because of procrastination.

Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Complete Sense Here In The Playground

Here in the playground
of the special school for world diplomacy,
everybody is watching the two bullies
circling each other.
‘Mentally deranged US dotard!’
yells Kim Jong-Un at Donald Trump.
‘Madman!’
yells Donald right back.

Miracle of miracles:
suddenly, and even though
it is so brief it is all over by the time
they start their next sentences,
both of them are making
complete sense.

© David Bateman

North Korea: Trump and Kim call each other mad

David Bateman had his most recent book, Shtum: The Stutter Poems published by Iron Press, 2016. It's available from Iron Press, Amazon and elsewhere. ‘punchy poems... told with wit and invention’ – The Crack Magazine.

Monday, 25 September 2017

Forgotten Heroes

Not only those who fight and die
But those who watch a screen and sigh:
They also serve who push a switch
And leave the field with mental twitch.
The bravest feat of British arms:
To game away their moral qualms;
For, if we doubt these propositions,
What medals then for politicians?

© Philip Challinor

UK drone pilots to get medals for killing from 2,000 miles outside the combat zone

Philip Challinor posts fiction, satire and assorted grumbles on his blog: The Curmudgeon. His longer fiction is available here.

Sunday, 24 September 2017

Sound of Hope

bodies
wrapped in sheets
are carried out
one by one
through the night

people are weeping
shouting
calling for help
a criss-cross of cries
hundreds clamour
in a hubbub of crowds

suddenly
a man raises his arm
his hand a silent command

all fall quiet

silence runs in the roads
all you can hear is hope

breath held
in voiceless prayer

they watch
wait
dumb
unmoving

concrete debris piled
buildings tight layered
block on block
floor on floor

someone is hitting a wall
deep down there

knock knock knock

hush hush hush

knock knock knock

hush hush hush

and a fireman whispers

Viva! Viva! Viva!
Alive! Alive! Alive!

© Jackie Biggs

Mexico earthquake: Death toll rises as search for survivors goes on

Jackie Biggs has had poetry published in many magazines and anthologies, both print and online. Her first collection is The Spaces in Between (2015). She blogs at: The Spaces in Between. Twitter: @JackieNews

Saturday, 23 September 2017

Autumn Equinox

The sky above my house is blue,

Timeless, dateless blue that

Beckons, urges, demands

Me to surrender.



I stare above the walls,

The gates with rust encroaching,

The pots of hard-pressed flowers,

To blue sucking me upward.



Thin clouds stretch and bask

In sun-sent rays and daytime

Sky smiles like a lover

Knowing beyond lie mysteries of stars.



I am there. The earth’s truest

Beauty is above the earth,

Calling me upward on this

Rare day of balance, calling me



Up to the infinity of blue.

No earthquake, no tempest,

No hatred, no cancer, no pain.

My spirit soars, is free.

© Charlie Lambert

Say goodbye to summer as sun passes over equator marking first day of autumn

Charlie Lambert is a former journalist and sports broadcaster who turned to a different form of media in 2016 when he started writing poetry. He lives in Liverpool.

Friday, 22 September 2017

The Origins of Fuzzy Logic

i.m. Lotfi Zadeh 1921-2017



When she called to cancel

dinner, she offered

no excuse, said that

something had come up,

a phrase that got me

thinking

about the elasticity of truth.



I called her back,

hung up

before she answered,

knowing

that a missed call

can create a fresh truth,

one that begs

to be uncovered.

© Maurice Devitt

Remembering Lotfi Zadeh, the Inventor of Fuzzy Logic

Maurice Devitt was runner-up in The Interpreter’s House Poetry Competition in 2017, he has had poems published in Ireland, England, Scotland, the US, Mexico, Romania, India and Australia, runs the Irish Centre for Poetry Studies site and is a founder member of the Hibernian Writers’ Group.

Thursday, 21 September 2017

Dicing With Death

The act of a Russian has now come to light:
he was on duty in nineteen-eighty-three
monitoring early signs of a nuclear attack.
He took a decision that proved to be right
but what he did might have meant the sack.
Incoming missiles from the US. were spotted
by faulty computers but it was a false alarm.
Stanislav took a gamble and kept shtumm
thus saving the world from terrible harm.
If he had been wrong, an enormous blast
would have happened a few minutes later
and a global conflict would’ve happened fast.
We should praise this man who saved the day
and who sadly passed away last May.

© Luigi Pagano

Stanislav Petrov, who averted possible nuclear war, dies at 77

Luigi Pagano has published three collections of poems: ‘Idle Thoughts’, ’Reflections’ and ‘Poetry On Tap’. His work has been featured in ABCTales’ magazines,UKAuthors’ anthologies, Poetry24 and several other publications.

Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Secret North Korean Poet

I wear the title of my poem.
Official Haircut 17.
From the Official Haircut List.
I chose 17 at random.
And not because I like the style.

I use the Jasmine nom-de plume.
It throws the SD off my scent.
They’re still looking for a woman.
It doesn’t stop me making stink.
When I discuss our Nation’s shit.

Conductor on a People’s Bus.
I stare into the peoples’ eyes.
And see what’s really going on.
I like the rhythm of stop-start.
The none of this – too much of that.




Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Maria

“The most beautiful sound I ever heard:
Maria, Maria, Maria, Maria . . . “


I wonder how many will sing this refrain

as the storm reaches the Lesser Antilles.

Expected to become a major hurricane

with strong winds and torrential rain

this Maria follows in Irma’s footsteps

to cause havoc to the Leeward Islands

and any place which stands in its path.

Are these disturbances caused by us

or are they the result of a divine wrath?

We should at least be seen to discuss

the possibility that it is global warming

the real reason for this wild weather

because the victims of such disasters

are, we see, at the end of their tether.

© Luigi Pagano


Luigi has published three collections of poems: ‘Idle Thoughts’, ’Reflections’ and ‘Poetry On Tap’. His work has been featured in ABCTales’ magazines,UKAuthors’ anthologies, Poetry24 and several other publications.

Monday, 18 September 2017

Evacuating Hereford

From Fir Tree Lane junction and the Straight Mile
Near where World War Two hand grenades were found,
They shut roads and placed a cordon around
So they could make things safe army style;
People were moved out of homes for a while
Taking all their pets, every cat and hound;
As warning cones were put down on the ground,
A real nuisance there was hardly a smile.

‘I can’t get my workforce in’ said one man
The cross owner of business premises,
But Margaret who’d lived there since forty one
Said ‘I’m not moving out at my expense,
If you’d been here in the war you’d not run
Or be frightened by this kind of nonsense!’

© David Subacchi

Hereford industrial estate evacuated after 'grenade' blast

David lives in Wales where he was born of Italian roots. He studied at the University of Liverpool and has five published collections of poetry.
He writes in English, Welsh and Italian.

Sunday, 17 September 2017

1960s Immigrant to Boston

I. First


Off the boat.

Real houses made of wood.

Four feet of snow.

This is U.S. winter?


Need to use the John?

What to answer?

(My brother John just dropped me off.)

Five dollars a week to clean, cook,

babysit three kids.

Use only back door.


Part-time cashier at A&P.

Two large nickels equal one very small dime.

Oh you have an English accent.

Work to lose it.


Women on the T dress-up

thick make-up

poofy hair

but sneakers not shoes.

Also poor?



II. College First Months


No money, no car

can’t drive anyway

also on wrong side.


Irish and blacks run from police.

Yemenis run from their land

hide face in college coffee shops.


Beatles blare on the street.

Pro tennis at Longwood Cricket Club.

Jamaica Pond near Pill Hill.


Bailey’s ice cream, chocolate sauce.

Fenway path, keep going past Sears…


Ahhh, the Red Sox.

© Lavinia Kumar

Why the American ‘Dreamers’ programme needs to be saved

Lavinia Kumar’s new poetry book, The Celtic Fisherman’s Wife: A Druid Life, is on Amazon (US & UK). Her website is laviniakumar.org

Saturday, 16 September 2017

Leaving Ireland for England, 1950s

Mother was taking us to where

she usually was.


People threw up.

Irish sea rough,

night dark ­­– hard

to know how to escape

mess on the deck

vile smells

crashing noise

confusion.


We, ten and eight,

knew rocky beaches,

the Sugar Loaf,

rides on donkey and cart,

boarding school.

We were leaving –

boat then train,

more trains.


In the end

not coming back.

© Lavinia Kumar

UK Home Office 'cannot be trusted', say EU citizens' rights groups

Lavinia Kumar’s new poetry book, The Celtic Fisherman’s Wife: A Druid Life, is on Amazon (US & UK). Her website is laviniakumar.org

Friday, 15 September 2017

Insult

I’m not, admittedly, the world’s most handsome
of lizards, so my mirror tells me daily.
I’ve never been approached to be a model -
not that I’m overweight, just – over-scaly.
My eyes are on the sides which makes things awkward
when chatting up a female in a bar.
She’s never sure I’m paying her attention
while all the other girls around her are.
Despite all this, however, it’s an insult
to read the news today. Well, what a shock!
However could a lizard be mistaken
for a smelly, crusty, old discarded sock?
My eyes – they may not do me any favours,
But they should have gone – that family – to Specsavers.

© Fran Hill


Fran is a writer and English teacher based in Warwickshire, UK.

Thursday, 14 September 2017

to put a cap on austerity

man enters bank then raises gun
to encourage a withdrawal
gets fifteen years
without remission

man enters Parliament and orders cops
to deliver electric shock stunning cosh
nips off to Panama to make a secret deposit
ends in the Lords nicking more each day
for life

The Nasty Party
learning nothing
all the while

this that and the other prey into their cell phones
way beyond Henry The Eighth floor
Grenfell Tower

sprinkle of teardrops not enough

© Philip Johnson


Philip's work includes hard copy published by: Poetry Now, Anchor Poets, North West Disabled Writers Group, Das Alchemy, The Ugly Tree; Poetry Scotland, Mid Cheshire Writers Group, Cheshire Carers Centre Newsletter, National Assc for Colitis & Crohn's Disease newsletters, local, regional and a national newspaper.

Electronic Formats: Write Away, Caught In The Net, The Red Pencil, and The Writer's Hood, Transparent Words; Caught In The Net

Wednesday, 13 September 2017

Conductors of the sun

First, the moon left   sunlight encroached on night

Second, the waves stopped   entire oceans at rest 

Third, the wind died   no rustling of leaves

Fourth, the stars were smogged out   the galaxy map erased

Fifth, the birds stopped chirping   winged creatures fell from the sky

Sixth, the people kept doing people things   as all other life forms withered away

And on the seventh day   the Mother cried

© Sarah Bigham

In a changing Arctic, a lone Coast Guard icebreaker maneuvers through ice and geopolitics

Sarah lives in Maryland with her kind chemist wife, their three independent cats, and an unwieldy herb garden. Find her at www.sgbigham.com

Tuesday, 12 September 2017

The Turkey Vultures

…like a group of balding monks gathered in prayer
Peter Dunne

Nothing pious about the vulture
at the roadside where I stopped my car
to watch its wrinkled red head pluck
at bloody guts. It eyed me and hissed,
then dragged its meal behind a bush.
Wasted effort—I’m not fond of gopher.

Observe a vulture’s six-foot wingspread
riding the thermals, but consider
fifteen shaggy mounds roosting high
every night in the maples.
I have eight children, Maggie said.
Those birds better keep their distance.

© Nancy Scott

Turkey Vultures, the Underrated Locals

Nancy is author of nine books of poetry. Many of her poems deal with social justice issues.
She resides in New Jersey, USA, www.nancyscott.net

Monday, 11 September 2017

No Arborist

They are planting young trees in the park.
They are not a few but many these trees, being
different in colour and kind and, since I am no arborist,
their names are beyond my poor knowing.

They are spaced apart to grow into shade
where presently the sun burns the grass,
those places where the earth now splits in fissures
and the slithering earthworm shrivels.

And each tender sapling has its own plastic sleeve
like a parent to protect and support it;
though the wind may blow still and dogs may come
and, at night, eager creatures with sharp teeth.

And it is right not to question or quibble over this
but to invest in the green shoots to come.
Only small patience and the gardener's good care,
a little sunshine and sweet rain are needed.

We are wise in such things. We tend to our trees.
Our parks, our gardens, our civic spaces, all these enrich us.
Our children, though, we do not nurture well.
How then shall they flourish and grow tall?

© Abigail Elizabeth Ottley

David Cameron’s legacy is soaring child poverty – with worse to come

Abigail Elizabeth Ottley (formerly Wyatt) writes poetry and short fiction from her home in Penzance. She is presently involved in a project that aims to brighten up the town with street art and poetry. In this she will be assisted by artist, Stella Rose Benson and fellow Penzance poet, Gray Lightfoot.

Sunday, 10 September 2017

Sunday 'Shorts'

A typical Tinder date

"Our date at Nandos went so well, why don't you come back to mine"?
"A scientology doc awaiting and a lovely bottle of wine"
She maybe the special one, the one I've been waiting for all my life
Maybe the one that will eventually become my wife
An hour into our evening and all is going great
Then she tells me she needs the loo, "I think it's something I ate"
Off she went to the toilet to do a number two
But she encountered a problem with a floating poo
"I've made a slight error I feel a bit of a fool"
"I tried throwing out the window a rogue floating stool"
But the turd didn't go it landed between panes
And it all went wrong when we tried to retrieve these remains
She said "As I'm a gymnast I'll reach and grab the crap"
We managed to get the poo out, the window now became her trap
15 minutes upside-down, I panicked and rang the fire brigade
They came within minutes and released her from this charade
I appreciate a toilet more than ever before, it was an important poo
I now raise money for 3rd world countries to have access to a flushing loo
I also learnt a few things from this Tinder date
1stly she's not the one for me
2ndly a diet of low fibre high fat will create a floater
3rdly Don't throw excrement out of windows.

© Robin Welsh

The Story Of A Woman Stuck Upside-Down In A Window Which Has Taken Over The Internet

Robin writes poems and rhymes daily about all life in general...but mainly politics, human rights and world affairs. Performing at every opportunity he can get, not yet published because of procrastination.


Python Round the Bend

All animal lovers down in Southend
Began to gasp with shock and amazement
At what seemed a hoax or entertainment
When a python emerged from round the bend.
But on lifting the seat not to offend
A snake is not part of the arrangement
Stubborn disbelief causing resentment
For the young boy involved did not pretend.

Still the snake catcher arrived most promptly
To confirm the facts from expert training;
Travelling upwards from the sewer below
A harmless serpent most definitely
In search of freedom after escaping,
Scaring a lad who just wanted to go.

© David Subacchi

Python found lurking in bathroom toilet in Southend

David lives in Wales where he was born of Italian roots. He studied at the University of Liverpool and has five published collections of poetry.
He writes in English, Welsh and Italian.

Saturday, 9 September 2017

National Disgrace

Don’t worry about

Cutting corners. We’re Brits,

It’s what we do.


Fill in a form,

No problem, we’ll simply

Wave it through.


Details? They’re like

Taxes, for fools,

Not me and you.


Don’t worry about

Cutting corners. We’re Brits,

It’s what we do.


Titanic looked fantastic,

Cost a vast amount.

Too bad that no-one noticed

Sub-standard lifeboat count.


The Coal Board said don’t worry,

Don’t listen to the man

Who says the tip’s unstable, too

Close to Aberfan.


We’ll have a game of football,

Get the Scousers to attend.

Win, lose or draw they’ll be just fine

On Leppings Lane End.


Don’t worry about

Cutting corners. We’re Brits,

It’s what we do.


Don’t look across the city,

I wouldn’t if I were you.

That tower block is ghastly,

Burned out, it spoils the view.

They say some people saved some cash

And nodded fire tests through,

But the truth old boy is that we’re Brits,


And this is what we do.


© Charlie Lambert

Grenfell Tower: 'Twenty suicide attempts' since fire

Charlie Lambert is a former journalist and sports broadcaster who turned to a different form of media in 2016 when he started writing poetry. He lives in Liverpool. Click HERE out more about Charlie.

Friday, 8 September 2017

Irma la Douce

In my younger days the name Irma la Douce
was synonymous with sweetness and light.
She was a frolicsome but likeable tart
but though full of mischief and naughtiness
she was never as wicked or as troublesome
as the eponymous counterpart of today.
This Irma is neither sweet nor amenable,
but a vicious hurricane which destroys
anything and anyone who stands in her way.
Torrential rain and wind leave a lethal trail
and more extreme weather will follow.
While some climate change deniers will say
that they sympathise and share our sorrow
they are not the ones who are left to wail.

© Luigi Pagano

Hurricane Irma's trail of havoc in Sint-Maarten

Luigi Pagano has published three collections of poems: ‘Idle Thoughts’, ’Reflections’ and ‘Poetry On Tap’. His work has been featured in ABCTales’ magazines, UKAuthors’ anthologies, Poetry24 and several other publications.
http://gigipagano.wixsite.com/mysite

Thursday, 7 September 2017

Whiskey History

Where the tour ends;
all go to taste the gold distilled;
a dim and humid
shade for a slave
to brew inferno and blaze
sleeps and stays awake.
We know. We know nothing.

I imagine my father’s
grandfather’s father had
a lily white moustache,
gnarled hands, burnt when
his moonshine maker
struck a sober conversation
about his wife - a slave’s slave.

Where my imagination leaves
an arctic trail in a moist hole
a pair of eyes burn,
grass looks like the one
moving across the meadow,
and from a busted still
the steam of moon mash
seeks for an ancient thirst.

© Kushal Poddar

The lost story of Nearest Green, the slave who taught Jack Daniel how to make whiskey

Kushal Poddar is editor of the online magazine ‘Words Surfacing’ He authored ‘The Circus Came To My Island’ (Spare Change Press, Ohio), “A Place For Your Ghost Animals” (Ripple Effect Publishing, Colorado Springs), “Understanding The Neighborhood” (BRP, Australia), “Scratches Within (Florida, USA)” and “Kleptomaniac’s Book of Unoriginal Poems(co-authored)”

Wednesday, 6 September 2017

13 years asleep

Asleep, but still conscious
Aware of all around me
I'm not dead
I'm still here
I know you're here too
I can hear you
I can feel you
You don't know I know
You don't care for me
13 years as a ghost
Most wish I was dead
I do too sometimes
I cant take anymore
I don't want abuse
I want to wake
No more nightmare
No more sleep
No more torture of TV
No more scalding food
Treat me as a human
Treat me with respect
I respect you
I know I will awake
I will awake
I will be me again
You just watch...

© Robin Welsh

MAN WAS TRAPPED INSIDE HIS OWN BODY FOR 13 YEARS

Robin writes poems and rhymes daily about all life in general...but mainly politics, human rights and world affairs. Performing at every opportunity he can get, not yet published because of procrastination.

Tuesday, 5 September 2017

A Dreamer’s Questions

Did we have a right to dream these dreams
about living in this dreamed-up musical line,
“Home of the free…and land of the brave?”

Frankly, I think DACA is a harsh acronym,
But the word “Dreamers” says it all, and gently.
So now, gracious extension, perhaps 6 months
to stew in the chemical and bacterial Harvey waters
before we get the boot? What good is that?

More: What good is it to dream if there is no dream?
And when we wake up, the dream was simply an illusion,
Jeff Sessions—that you could take away?
Your purity is showing, Oh! And so beholden
to brutal Daddy Trump, and yes, I’ve read about the Hessians;
just want to say that all of these acronym promises are tainted,
and yet I want to stay—awake—and be free.

© Kay Weeks

Trump Seriously Considering Ending DACA, With 6-Month Delay

Kay Weeks, retired from DOI, NPS (national historic preservation) lives in Ellicott City, Maryland. She writes and paints and loves the ocean, rivers, and yesterday’s sunrise.

Monday, 4 September 2017

UXB Frankfurt

Over seventy two years I lay
Buried where you dropped me
With a defective fuse,
Until builders came
To uncover my fragility;
A familiar occurrence
In this land of hidden memories
Still claiming the lives
Of those who risk all
To prevent destruction.

Tomorrow they will move people
From dwellings, the opera house
And even a bank where gold
Reserves are stored
Hoping to make me safe;
Then slowly people will return
To continue living
On this violated soil
That conceals so many
Not yet ready to return
To the old stability.

David lives in Wales (UK) where he was born of Italian roots. He studied at the University of Liverpool and has 4 published collections of his English Language poetry: First Cut (2012), Hiding in Shadows (2014), Not Really a Stranger (2016) and A Terrible Beauty (2016) as well as a collection in Welsh: Eglwys Yng Nghremona (2016).

Sunday, 3 September 2017

Sunday 'Shorts'

Letter to My Cousins

Dear Munchkins, just to keep you posted.
I wore #Target, #Walmart, and #Payless today.
I went on a shopping spree at Acme, got there
in our ten-year-old Chevy with “Keep Ohio Lovely”
and smiling emoji stickers on the rear bumper.
Spent $21.15 on Cheerios, skim milk and two-for-one
packs of chicken parts and ground beef.
In the check-out line ahead of me, a platinum blonde
bragged to her iPhone how she’d been cast
as a African princess. Aw shucks the scene got cut.
Hey, we spent two glorious weeks in August
traveling from Canton to Little Rock
in our new reconditioned RV. Love, Loretta Sue

© Nancy Scott

Louise Linton: What to know about Steve Mnuchin's wife

Nancy is author of nine books of poetry. Many of her poems deal with social justice issues.
She resides in New Jersey, USA, www.nancyscott.net


So Donald Said to Harvey…

“Well, you have may limited rotating concentric powers—so sad—
but, please get this, Mr. Rabbit, I am King through election,
and that gives me the sole power to forgive a man
who wasn’t guilty in the first place because we need to get
rid of those people who aren’t white and with us…
to enhance my standing with others who love me, and make them happy!”

© Kay Weeks

Hurricane Harvey Makes Landfall Near Corpus Christi, Tex.

Trump Pardons Joe Arpaio, Who Became Face of Crackdown on Illegal Immigration

Kay Weeks is a retired historic preservation professional who lives in Oella, Ellicott City, Maryland— she paints and writes and shares.


even more fun if

even more fun if, in the future, these abused youngsters
send old Tory money grubbers down t' pit with only a candle for light and a plastic hat to keep em from harm should the scraping o' the shit shovel bring th' whole cavern crashing
upon em . . .

© Philip Johnson

Tory peer says Brexit is good because young people will be able to work longer hours

Philip's work includes hard copy published by: Poetry Now, Anchor Poets, North West Disabled Writers Group, Das Alchemy, The Ugly Tree; Poetry Scotland, Mid Cheshire Writers Group, Cheshire Carers Centre Newsletter, National Assc for Colitis & Crohn's Disease newsletters, local, regional and a national newspaper.


Electronic Formats: Write Away, Caught In The Net, The Red Pencil, and The Writer's Hood, Transparent Words; Caught In The Net

Saturday, 2 September 2017

The Arctic

we stand with our slips
of pink paper
waving at civil servants
little chitties
heavy on their tilt
and scupper not skating
lines of us
trembling like a taut wire
hit by a big stick —
we have walked for miles
in muffled silence
our grief insular
we listen
to the din of a planet
booming
through its blow hole
we listen
to stunned storms
rain-pelted doors
that flew back at us;

we listen
to jeering townsman
spiked tenants
home owners and keepers
the cram of lorries
delivering the lost
to canvassed shelters
and it needs scarcely
to be said
that we listened
to the crack in the ice —
something came up
dark as a whale’s eye
striking us senseless
and with one vast gulp
a mouth of water
swallowed us whole.

© Anne Marie Butler

Inside One of Houston’s Improvised Shelters

Annie is a published poet and landscape artist. She lives in a rural village of west Wales. She has a passion for language, her descriptive skills bring economy and colour.

Friday, 1 September 2017

Inspiration

I watched him as he huff-puffed past my window

those first few days when on his new regime

and watched again when he returned, now slower.

I reckoned that by Tuesday he’d give in.

But day by day he passed my window faster,

his face set in a grimace that said 'More'

as though he knew to give up was no option.

He’d seen a sign – the type you don’t ignore.

As weeks went by, he huff-puffed less, walked stronger,

his new legs striding through the morning light,

his body firming up as his resolve did - 

a future that had gone to seed, in sight.

            I watched him as I too had much to lose

            and tugged on my neglected walking shoes.

© Fran Hill

'A pedometer saved my life': How I became fit in my 60s

Fran is a writer and English teacher based in Warwickshire, UK.

Thursday, 31 August 2017

Washington DC Hotel

Melt the $24 cigar in a pot

Take a selfie with candied bacon

Insist on US flag fly in your cocktail

Enjoy ketchup cups topped with whipped cream

            Saunter over to men stirring curry

See – that’s the white man in a white suit

And, oh, move the lollipop tree next to bleached teeth

Wind dental fluoride around Bible-thick steak

Widen your smile with a $150 cognac

            Run down a red, white, blue lapel pin with a gold saber

Stab a crystal with an autograph pen

Ensure salmon does not mix with stallion

Wipe a lubed hand on a blue velvet curtain

Be careful the cheese on your cheek does not melt

© Lavinia Kumar

Trump Hotel at Night: Lobbyists, Cabinet Members, $60 Steaks

Lavinia Kumar’s new poetry book, The Celtic Fisherman’s Wife: A Druid Life, is on Amazon (US & UK). Her website is laviniakumar.org

Wednesday, 30 August 2017

Rising tide

Well this is the good life for sure,
up to our waists in waiting, a game of patience.
Nothing's new - I've seen Cold War,
the American dream, whatever that is,
the hate of race riots, shootings, the poor
of New Orleans washed away, ignored.

But I wish they hadn't called it Harvey,
that was my husband's name.
He wouldn't have stood for sitting around,
he'd have filled his head with a ten gallon hat,
got out before he drowned.

More like Hurricane Noah, something biblical.
Funny, I felt it in my water. For a long time
I'd thought I was going under, but ate my grits,
held my head up for another day.
That last infection might have sent me
but as my momma used to tell me:
It's not your turn until the good Lord says.

Still, I'm not used to sitting here in wet clothes,
helpless and in confusion ... yet.
I said to Pearl, I said, we didn't invite this deluge,
but we'll do what we always do - sit tight
and let it all wash over. We're at home
in our comfortable armchairs. Nothing is inevitable.
I miss my shows. The TV stopped working
when we were only paddling. Gert's given up
her incessant knitting, taken to wringing her hands.

I tell my son when he calls: They told us to stay here.
That was the plan. Some plan, he says. I say:
Better here than up on the roof, shown on the news
waving and dying. So undignified

© Clare Kirwan

The story behind the photo of assisted living residents submerged in water

Clare Kirwan was a co-founder of Poetry24 but has been dormant for the last couple of years like a hibernating dormouse / volcano... you choose

Tuesday, 29 August 2017

The World of Mularky

the little monster to be came home early
with a letter from school

cut his hair, it said, sharp fashion
we teach children

not yetti

we are not a nation of yetti
yet

this school proudly wants a student ready
to learn and flower into a blooming great

Trump

© Philip Johnson

Outrage after boy, 4, is sent home from school for having long hair

Philip's work includes hard copy published by: Poetry Now, Anchor Poets, North West Disabled Writers Group, Das Alchemy, The Ugly Tree; Poetry Scotland, Mid Cheshire Writers Group, Cheshire Carers Centre Newsletter, National Assc for Colitis & Crohn's Disease newsletters, local, regional and a national newspaper.

Electronic Formats: Write Away, Caught In The Net, The Red Pencil, and The Writer's Hood, Transparent Words; Caught In The Net

Monday, 28 August 2017

Up the Flagpole

Cadabra! Now we've wrested back control
Of our great Empire's ever-whiter soul,
We certainly cannot let what we do
Be limited by what is merely true.
We thus declare a mystic, phantom border
To call the Irish Free State back to order,
And guide recalcitrant and foreign nations
To better knowledge of their obligations.
Today's technology, we do admit,
For our great purpose is as yet unfit;
Yet with our wizard spunk we'll sort things out
By waving our appendages about.
Shall not the glory of these wondrous acts
Bring triumph over Brussels, fear, and facts?

© Philip Challinor

UK accused of 'magical thinking' over Brexit plan for Irish border

Philip Challinor posts fiction, satire and assorted grumbles at http://thecurmudgeonly.blogspot.co.uk/ His longer fiction is available at http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/challinor07

Sunday, 27 August 2017

Sunday 'Shorts'

Trumpaggedon

If Trump launches nukes
Winter may well be coming...
Nuclear Winter.

© Donnie Mountjoy

Donnie Mountjoy, Mock Paper Scissors' poet laureate and resident #HailkuMaster, revels in observing the absurd and risque, and commenting on it via social media using the ancient Japanese art form of haiku.


I can’t make love until Trump’s impeached

I just can’t

relax


When you caress me all I can think of is

the nuclear button


It’s nothing

to do with you


Surely by winter

we’ll be able to resume relations


Though it worries me to recall

how my grandfather, fleeing Warsaw in ‘39, said

In a few weeks this will all blow over

© Alina Macneal

Kim goes ballistic again - but his new rockets are all FLOPS: Brazen despot taunts Trump as North Korea blasts THREE missiles into the Sea of Japan

Alina lives in Philadelphia. Her poems have appeared in Apiary Magazine, Poems for the Writing, The World to Come, and other anthologies.


Unexpected Landing

What strange sea serpents lie here on the shore
Driven by strong waves onto Norfolk land
Enormous pipe sections stranded in sand
Longer than five Big Bens placed on the floor.
Onlookers gather all shocked to the core
Struggling this occurrence to understand
Nervously approaching to touch with hand
Lest angered creatures should rise up and roar.

Bound for Algeria for some great project
Of unknown purpose and significance
A storm caused towing chains to disconnect
Enabling a substantial divergence;
Now English voices are raised to object
To such an unexpected occurrence.

© David Subacchi

Norfolk beach giant pipe salvage under way

David lives in Wales (UK) where he was born of Italian roots. He studied at the University of Liverpool and has 4 published collections of his English Language poetry: First Cut (2012), Hiding in Shadows (2014), Not Really a Stranger (2016) and A Terrible Beauty (2016) as well as a collection in Welsh: Eglwys Yng Nghremona (2016).



Saturday, 26 August 2017

Rats

A celebration of late-night rats
skittered onto the streets
to muzzle into torn plastic,
bury their thrilled heads in rotting boxes,
run their tongues up and down
the insides of cans and
feast like cannibals on atrophied flesh
and the foolishness of humans.

Cackling and dancing at disgusted kicks,
a sharp stone hurled, an impotent curse,
they dipped their paws in putrefaction,
glorying in its stick and stench.
They made love to the filth and each other
in bag-littered alleys, under rain-fuzzed streetlamps,
nestling between toxic heaps, festering waste
and the disregarded dignities of humankind.

© Fran Hill

Birmingham residents think bin bag 'barricade' is a protest

Fran is a writer and English teacher based in Warwickshire, UK.

Friday, 25 August 2017

Goldfish are Not Allowed to Drive

The pond under ice

is not dead

waiting

for spring.


Goldfish are partying

drunk to the gills

bar wide open

genes full blast.


They laugh

at cold fisherman

hauling beer cans

over the ice


drunk as skunks

while fish

speed swim

high on drink.

© Lavinia Kumar

Fish sauced? Goldfish turn to alcohol to survive icy winters

Lavinia Kumar’s new poetry book, The Celtic Fisherman’s Wife: A Druid Life, is on Amazon (US & UK). Her website is laviniakumar.org

Thursday, 24 August 2017

Bangers

Thank you for the sausages - we lit a barbeque
(With an extinguisher standing by)

I picked mine when saving it from the burning barn
(It had just caught by eye)

They had a lovely smokey flavour
(Definitely hints of hay)

We don't get to eat everyone we save
(A good thing some might say)

© James Bessant

Rescued piglets served up as sausages to firefighters

James lives in London, and writes as often as he can amongst the chaos of family life, inspired by everything and anything in the world. He sometimes blogs here: https://jamesbessant.blogspot.co.uk/

Wednesday, 23 August 2017

What Took You So Long?

And every time the doorbell rang
I thought it might be you,
but no -
a plumber to fix a leaky tap,
a man on a bicycle
selling chicken soup
or my wife,
unable to locate her key -
each unaware
that they had walked themselves
into the plot.

© Maurice Devitt

The guilty secret: Chinese crime writer arrested for four cold-case murders

Maurice was runner-up in The Interpreter’s House Poetry Competition in 2017, he has had poems published in Ireland, England, Scotland, the US, Mexico, Romania, India and Australia, runs the Irish Centre for Poetry Studies site and is a founder member of the Hibernian Writers’ Group.

Tuesday, 22 August 2017

City Boys

They fall from the top
They fall from grace
Home is a penthouse
Never see their face
Lamborghinis
Gucci
The Ivy
And yachts
Gamble with billions
Like playing the slots
That's what they do
These City boys
Make the rich richer
To buy bigger toys
When they lose
A really big bet
Who really loses?
Who pays the debt?
They fall from the top
They fall from grace
These city boys
In the trading place

© Robin Welsh

City worker dies in fall from seventh floor of London Stock Exchange

Robin writes poems and rhymes daily about all life in general...but mainly politics, human rights and world affairs. Performing at every opportunity he can get, not yet published because of procrastination.

Monday, 21 August 2017

There were dreamers once but modern medicine helped cure us of that

There is more cash to be made
with incarceration
than there is in curing

this we already know.

an infinity of illusions
laced within its anaesthesia
anaemic attempts at truly understanding

the opiate.

criminal till it crashes through
the gold plated gates
of white suburbia

wait till the sheriff’s wife gets hooked.

concern becomes crisis
when caucasian words
scramble for control

medicine cabinets and childrens carousels
replace street corners.

prescription mobilisation
zombification is one way
to debilitate the working poor

healthcare doesn’t care to cover those already hooked.

overdoses in shopping center
parking lots in leased SUV’s
and an infant suffocating in a car seat
in the mid summer heat

addiction a tragedy for any family.

and the powers that be
wanna know,
that it has escaped the cities

label this crisis,
a social disease.

© Joshua Baumgarten

Vaccines for opioid addiction nowhere close to reality, experts say

Joshua is an ex-pat New Yorker living in Holland. He organises the Irrational Library evenings - nights of poetry, rock n roll and casual chaos, and performs as a Standup Spoken Word artist.

Sunday, 20 August 2017

Sunday 'Shorts'

New Colossus Renegotiates Predecessor’s Bad Deal

Give me your English-speaking,
Your high-skilled yearning to earn more.
Send me 50% fewer. No more sneaking
around escaping persecution, or war.
Angela, hold this light while I shut the door!

© Alina Macneal

White House policy adviser downplays Statue of Liberty's famous poem

Alina Macneal lives in Philadelphia. Her poems have appeared in Apiary Magazine, Poems for the Writing, The World to Come, and other anthologies.


Let's End the Rhetoric!

Said Mr. Trump, the Great I Am,
"If Kim Jong Un attacks Guam
I'll take him down by several pegs.
I'll shell him with infected eggs."

© Richard Fletcher

Trump warns N Korea that US military is 'locked and loaded'

Eggs containing fipronil found in 15 EU countries and Hong Kong

Over the years Richard has had poems published in "Words", "Chapman", "Written in Ink", "New Writing Scotland", "Scottish Poetry 8" and other poetry magazines.

Editor's note: Richard suggests that others might wish to add another quatrain. Please feel free to do so.

Beach

A few turtles,
far less in number
than those swam
last season,
smuggle rain eggs
in their warm bellies.

Sun crawls on top of your toenail.
Look at the flock of giggles across the azure.

© Kushal Poddar

Summer welcomes sea turtles to the shores of Puerto Vallarta

Kushal Poddar is editor of the online magazine ‘Words Surfacing’ He authored ‘The Circus Came To My Island’ (Spare Change Press, Ohio), “A Place For Your Ghost Animals” (Ripple Effect Publishing, Colorado Springs), “Understanding The Neighborhood” (BRP, Australia), “Scratches Within (Florida, USA)” and “Kleptomaniac’s Book of Unoriginal Poems(co-authored)”