Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Two Poems by Les Merton

There are echoes
in the countryside
between branches among leaves
and within the petals of flowers.
Perhaps it's the whispers of ancient ones
with secrets of above and below ground.
Perhaps it's music from days long past
floating around nature’s colours.
In the countryside;
            there are echoes
that belong in this sanctuary of peace.
They have been caught by time
and given back to us.

Life in the Shell
Hungry Barn Owl chicks wait in the wings
of the shell of a theatre, never rebuilt
after a cluster of fire bombs played havoc
on the stage, the flames danced
through the stalls and balcony,
as the final curtain fell in the theatre
the biggest audience of its life
watched the act of mindless destruction.
Barn Owl parents in sophistic flight return
alula and legs extended, braking to land
under the roof that laughter tried to raise.
Prey hanging from curved beaks
ready to feed white heart-faced chicks
that look as ghostly as Hamlet's father
spotlighted by the rays from the moon.
Les Merton is Cornish and proud of it. He earned his living in a variety of ways:  grocery shop manager, coalman, bus conductor, factory worker, canvasser, film extra, fortune teller, entertainment agent, and after failing as a comedian, the other jobs are best forgotten.
He’s dabbled at writing on and off from the age of 16, however it was in 1996 he decided to give it a go properly. In 2002, he founded Poetry Cornwall/ Bardhonyeth Kernow and as been its editor ever since. In 2004, his endeavours were recognised when he was made a Bard of Gorsedh Kernow for services to Cornish Literature. His Bardic name is Map Hallow (Son of the Moors).
Les has also appear on: ITV’s That Sunday Night Show, BBC TV Spotlight News, and the following Radio Stations: BBC Radio Bristol, Duchy Hospital Radio, BBC Radio Cornwall, BBC Radio 4, Pirate FM, BBC Radio Five Live, ABC Radio Canberra Australia. He enjoys performing  and has given readings all over the UK and in Ndola Zambia.

Monday, July 29, 2013

A Poem by A.g. Synclair


Asian flowers-Hypanthia and Fern-
mindful of coiled rain

of Mothers milk,

suckling fallow greens and blues
satiated by ancient hands-leavened spirits-
giver and taker of lives,

of heart and will,

bereft of everlasting shi,
the bereaved-lost and alone-
borne of fruit, and gum trees, and pearl.
A.g. Synclair is an unapologetic pessimist, rule breaker, and rebel without a clue. When he isn't editing The Montucky Review and serving on the editorial staff of The Bookends Review, he is drinking from glasses that are perpetually half empty and hiding from the sun, which is clearly trying to kill him. Despite being extensively published around the globe, he flies under the radar. Deftly.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Three Poems by Ann Egan

Forget-me-not in June

Midsummer has passed,
I search the tangle of
grass, flowers and shrubs
for that solitary glimmer.

Blue lasted all these weeks,
months now, dearest son.
For one more day
I find the forget-me-not.

Late in season, a single bloom
flowers hope beyond time.


That stone is a rabbit
crouched in the stream,
paws grapple the depths,
eyes maze in the light.

Ripples tackle his back,
flow sideways by his ears,
snout trembles at scents
locked in grey memory.

Soldier Leaves

Golden lights play on leaves,
transforms them to soldiers,

their burnished buttons glow
as they fasten their jackets

and close in beating hearts.
They mount their horses

while sulphur musts the air,
hooves pound tales to stone.

Little boys soft in mothers’ arms,
snuggle into shawls as flashes

blue their eyes with dreams,
their fingers curl fragrances,

their toes wriggle with life.
Solid ground grips their feet,

chilly air reds their faces,
marches them to canon’s clasp.

Buttons glow harsh forms,
steel chills peaceful hold,

lurks in sun’s lull on leaves.

Ann Egan is a poet and historian from the borders of counties Laois and Offaly, now living in Kildare, Ireland.  Her poetry collections are Landing the Sea (Bradshaw Books) and The Wren Women (Black Mountain Press) and Telling Time, (Bradshaw Books, 2012). A novel, Brigid of Kildare was published in 2001.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

A Poem by J.lynn Sheridan


Summer rain,
the flick of a gray titmouse tufted in a nest
of dried clover and moss,
one short trip to the feeder— lazy, needy,
mild and easy
in the light of thunder,
you and I, we are
by rains of sorrow,
thirst-teased in our waking, our rising, 
bluffing behind our imposing need for lazy
feedings mild and easy.

Tell me if our weakness isn't really our strength,
tell me if our strength isn't really our weakness
and we have it all wrong, tell all the world
our summers need the thunder
and so do we
if we want to fly
against the driving rain.
J.lynn Sheridan writes in the Chain O’ Lakes of northern Illinois in a very ordinary house, but she’d rather live in an old hardware store for the aroma, ambiance, and possibilities. She has recently been published in Beyond the Dark Room and Storm Cycle  2012, Four and Twenty Literary Journal, The Plum Plum, Jellyfish Whispers, MouseTales Press, and Enhance. She is currently working on her first novel. Find her at  and @J.lynnSheridan.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

A Poem by Matthew Wylie

The Isle of Ulnegra

From this then
I call upon the flower peddler
            And the old man
Held by ambries,
Who stations himself
Between the sun and the sand
          So as to call upon the salt water
That it is ripe enough
          For your words.
Drawing on allusions of whole horses
Sperm whales,
And the trac-ed foot prints
of the monomaniacal Ocean,
      I wake up only once,

To behold the winter
Toeing the sand.
Matthew Wylie currently lives in Canada and teaches European Literature at a small private school in North York, Ontario.  Matthew’s works have been published in various scholarly / poetry journals, such as The Toronto Slavic Quarterly, Cinetext: Film and Philosophy, Temenos: Journal of Creative Writing, Ygdrasil: Journal of the Poetic Arts, International Zeitschrift, The Externalist:  A Journal of Perspectives,  and others.  He enjoys studying butterflies, entertaining the tigers that pace throughout the corridors of his home, photography, siestas, and sharks.   

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Two Poems by Marianne Szlyk


No one will ever say to me
“it was so
it hurt.”

My red is not the red
of a carefully cultivated rose
against a white fence.

My orange is not the orange
of the lilies
crowding the base of a statue
of St. Francis of Assisi.

My petals are as stiff
as the plastic flowers
in your mother’s closet.

My scent is musty,
from the days before
air conditioning.

a flower.

Black Locust after the Storm

The last black locust, half-dead,
totters at the edge of the cemetery;
its fellows’ branches and stacked wood
are scattered throughout.

This tree is the last living relative,
the last of the gangly old women
with clip-on earrings
or the last of the old men
with work-gnarled hands.

This tree is the last who remembers.

Marianne Szlyk is an associate professor of English at Montgomery College, Rockville as well as an associate editor at the Potomac Review.  Most recently, her poems have appeared in the Blue Hour Literary Anthology Volume Two, Jellyfish Whispers, and Aberration Labyrinth.

Friday, July 19, 2013

A Poem by Susan Dale


Moccasin feet on jagged mountains
The mountains like giant lizards
changing colors with a sun’s whims.
Navajo sons lasso clouds of pipe smoke
drifting across vast deserts
of scrub brush and cacti.
and the sands moistened with the tears
of broken promises

The coyotes’ yowl; black bears growl

And mission bells peel
over sands of bobcats and tarantulas.

The clop-clop of a patient burro
plodding by mines of silver and copper
when night falls fast and cold
under wide sombrero skies. 

Susan Dale’s poems and fiction are on Eastown Fiction, Ken *Again, Penwood Review,  Yesteryear Fiction, Feathered Flounder, Hurricane Press, and Writing Disorder. In 2007, she won the grand prize for poetry from Oneswan. 


Sunday, July 14, 2013

Three Poems by Felino A. Soriano

from Of isolated limning
amid a searching
in this dress code of summer
skin wears lessened fabric ated
forays              in(to)ward
display-case substance the trophy
never tarnished, exposes
fingered printed u-turn
the being of noted experimentation
sidenotes soliloquies of stubborn
enhancements                                        these
in the melody of searching
toward exiled affirmations
or brevity in the language
of improvised wings
watching as the butterfly performs
formalities here
long-from identifying freedom
and the predetermined misuses of age and
                                    this version of space
-expectation, existence, distance
I hear the blue black speckles decorate
contoured aspects of courage
                                                            wings these
lavender waves toward the watching of my
open-mouthed exhalations, untainted
delineated angles this odonate
swelled the swollen ring
                        halo ontology
                        flame in the blued momentum
                        figurative, pre-, though slim halls are
walking into widening varied interest
blur resembles foreign syllables
in the hover of waiting for
language to conceal uncontrollable
Felino A. Soriano’s most recent poetry collections include Pathos|particular invocation (Fowlpox Press, 2013), Extolment in the praising exhalation of jazz (Kind of a Hurricane Press, 2013), and the collaborative volume with poet, Heller Levinson and visual artist, Linda Lynch, Hinge Trio (La Alameda Press, 2012).  He publishes the online endeavors Counterexample Poetics and Differentia Press. His work finds foundation in philosophical studies and connection to various idioms of jazz music. He lives in California with his wife and family and is the director of supported living and independent living programs providing supports to adults with developmental disabilities.  For further information, please visit


Friday, July 12, 2013

Three Poems by William G. Davies

Dix Hill Farm
The sky heals itself
as though it were a wound
inflicted by relentless lightening
whose varicose veins
collapse into a rouge
of sienna and cream
as sheep bleat
and rouse the cradle cap
from their fleece. 

The lightening bugs blink
as if the night had
a hundred yellow eyes
or nervous tics
watching the moon
like a voodoo doll
stabbed by pine needles.

Overlooking The Rockville Bridge
The sky looks as if
a bottle of Irish whiskey
were spilled over it
or a flange loosened
on a bilge pump
as a pod of dolphins
arc away from
the darkening spume.
William G. Davies has published in Diluted Ink, The Artistic Muse, Absinthe and many others.  He is 2013 Poet Laureate for Perry County, Pennsylvania.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Three Poems by Byron Beynon


The boy sweeps,
the rain falls,
fish swim behind glass walls.
A gremlin enters
the machinery of sky,
strains the light to close early.
A carnival of tropical fish
edge their curious route
beneath the jetty of Welcome Bay.
Nearby a particular music
disturbs the parsley of rainforest,
a growing orchestra of high-pitched green.


They speak the language here,
beyond the west field
near to the place
where they can listen
to the high cry of crows,
echoing the untamed morning air
visible in the percussion
of their dance;
a harbour of trees
watching the sun rise,
vegetable-clouds lifting
the day with images,
a remembered map of understanding
following the keening mind's journey,
such is the sound of branches growing,
inescapable, their leaves of longing.


I watch them working the estuary
probing the mud with curved detectors,
intense with silence
they have waited until now
for the tide to leave,
urgent and fresh
the unknown thoughts within
investigate the intimate
in a mourning of wind,
coaxing in the winter light
a communal menu on this sure line,
they will return to these ingredients,
unbroken habits
that come once more
inside the day's echo.

Byron Beynon lives in Wales. His work has appeared in several publications including London Magazine, Poetry Ireland Review, The Blue Hour, Poetry Wales, The Wilderness House Literary Review and The Wolf. His most recent collection is Human Shores (Lapwing Publications). A Pushcart Prize nominee.

Monday, July 8, 2013

A Poem by Miguel Jacq


      onset of winter
I bent  the back
  of an  older man
to take a photo  of

            a  cobweb
wearing frost like
dangerous jewels
on        the path.

            but the light
was all    wrong
on      the forest floor
where beasts like this

blot out the  sun.
and my knees
at cold concrete

Miguel Jacq is a French-Australian poet/photographer/fiend. He lives with his wife in Melbourne, Australia, where he runs (some say ruins) an I.T business.  His work has appeared in various online literary journals such as Deep Water Journal, as well as in several printed anthologies by The Blue Hour Press and Dagda Publishing.  His first poetry collection, titled ‘Black Coat City’, was released in print and e-book in February 2013 (presumably the critical acclaim is drunk in a bar somewhere). It explored themes of anxiety and identity in individuals within society.  In addition to a growing collection of sporadic e-chaps, he is currently working on his next collection of poetry and photography, entitled 'Magnetics', slated for release in late 2013.  He regularly writes poems and publishes photography at

Saturday, July 6, 2013

A Poem by Thomas Piekarski


The tide dribbles out,
seabirds practically inert.
A lone tugboat
moored in darkness.
That tide replenishes
its every essence
reflected by a brilliant
abalone moon.
The finger-rolled basketball
dipped inside the hoop
then Englished out
just as the buzzer
ended the game.
This unfortunate twist
resulted in a prolonged
losing streak.
The pulse that requires
a neutron powered stethoscope
to detect it just may
contain only scant traces
of hints that anything moves.
You bet I despise those
incredibly crude impostors,
surly sorcerers
sorely lacking pathos.
I mean the bourgeois
leeches who preach
that money begets freedom.
And I can’t help but abhor
those sometimes skittish,
overwhelmingly scandalous
internet coquettes
who slather blogs all day
with their copious photos,
fodder for the curious octopus.
In endless effort
to promote their personas
they pound pylons deep
into slithery quicksand.
No terra firma for them.
No need, they think,
totally convinced
they’re dynamos
on a roll, champions
of the system
or captains of luxurious
ocean liners.
What they eventually construct
are bully pulpits, launching pads
from which to pitch the innocent,
bilk them of their heritage.
They feverishly seek
any means by which
to propel rampant
and insipid pomposity
that bans credibility.
Thomas Piekarski is a former editor of the California State Poetry Quarterly. His theater and restaurant reviews have been published in various newspapers, with poetry and interviews appearing in numerous national journals, among them Portland Review, Main Street Rag, Kestrel, Scarlet Literary Magazine, Cream City Review, Nimrod, Penny Ante Feud, New Plains Review, Poetry Quarterly, The Muse-an International Journal of Poetry, and Clockhouse Review. He has published a travel guide, Best Choices In Northern California, and Time Lines, a book of poems. He lives in Marina, California.