Author: Chris Murray

“A Guide to Feel-Good Doom” and other poems by Lisa Ardill

Dimples I am the wind that sighs at night through your bedroom window making your lovely hairs take flight. They rest against your cheek like affectionate little arms, and cling to your freckled flesh, its rosy flush their one dimpled source of life. Those could be my arms, holding fast to that imperfect reservoir into which I slip further each moment, sliding towards that gentle dip at the centre of your smooth skin. there is one on each side, To kidnap both mind and matter. The day I tumble into that tiny pool of love I will drown. and then I will float in your falling tears that follow me down whether those of sadness or joy, I will never know but either will hold me captive. Colourful Language your words are like flowers that come alive in a cold spring shooting from the ground with a gentleness that encumbers a hidden force they unearth their surroundings and mask others with their wondrous scent but sometimes their beauty is only soil deep the meaning tucked …

“The Unfinished Poem” and other poems by Caroline Johnstone

The Unfinished Poem The house his mind once called its home Has gaping roofs, and paint-cracked eaves, Of forget-me-not blues The frosted brittle skeletons of history and wit served now As a porridge of forgetfulness, faint echoes haunt Sweet gentle kisses of remembrance Dementia’s wraiths roam shadowed emptied rooms, Herald long laments for lonely roads where memories float In space yet give no hope, no sense of place. As Alice keeps on falling down the rabbit-holes of grief The curtains close on last acts interrupted. Observers weep at unfinished poems. 1771 – The American Wake (published by The Galway Review) My firstborn child declared his independence, Said he would choose to live, not die, by drought that stalked us all, Or drown by workhouse shame. The death knell rang. America had called, cried freedom, hope. He left our land, was pushed by fear, by poverty that gnawed his soul, And pulled by hope, and images of greener lands than these. While on the hill, the landlord nodded, raised the rents And watched our young ones …

|The Girl in The Photograph| and other poems by Shreya Barua

|The Girl in The Photograph|   I’ll take you by the hand and show you what it’s like to sit under neon signs when the city goes to sleep and you’ll have known a little bit more about what magic looks like I’ll take you by the lips and show you what it’s like to taste the snowflakes I caught on my tongue and you might get to know a lot bit more about what dreams feel like I’ll take you to places you’ll forget to remember I’ll show you things your eyes won’t believe until you start to wonder if I am real; if any of it is So, I’ll let go of your hand one final time break away from your lips one last time wrap all the magic and dreams around your little finger and go back to being the girl in the photograph |Syria’s Daughter|   I am Syria’s daughter. I will soon be just as forgotten as my name is. And when they come for me rummaging through heaps of …

“Vase Painters” and other poems by Magdalene Fry-Bigby

Fractyl Poem — Seeming, Appearance and Being How the true was with world Is sometimes bricked Out with bangles, Sound and sight both alike. Put your paint this Side, put it that Side, we talk a lot, like Talkers. And face This way, blink, brush Through lashes, powder on Powders, a look For, or about, Female, they say, so too, Some male, they say, So too this or Sewn to that. Or, some say Wine is crossed best In a vat, brains, Birds, nests like glowed on Dendrytic leaves, A state, or a Syntax, both one And the same. Say Most who say on What is seen and what is Thought, and what it Is that being Is, and yet can sometimes Be not, and then Become again.   Fractyl Poem: Be Nothing That Is, Not Hello is good, morning, Evening, night, We say Good to. How are you is peaceful It brings glad and Not angry thoughts. We listen, we hear things The conversing Has its ears told. Which is how televised Religious yes …

“Devotion” and other poems by Lani O’Hanlon

MY MOTHER’S LOVER   The occupational therapist who came to visit left an invalid toilet seat with handles in the bathroom and a gadget with a claw hand to pick up things from the floor. My mother demonstrated how they worked, rehearsing to be an old lady hobbling on arthritic feet. Until Stein arrived, the sailor she’d had an affair with thirty years before. ‘You have no idea how angry your father was.’ ‘I do. I was in the next bedroom.’ And so the Dutch man came, with flowers and still wearing her Claddagh ring. He had blue eyes and a dog called Bonny. The invalid toilet seat vanished. She made my sister go shopping for new underwear. First published in The Moth Issue 19 Winter 2014/2015 Ed, Rebecca O’ Connor BACK UP QUICK, THEY’RE HIPPIES   That was the year we drove into the commune in Cornwall. ‘Jesus Jim’ mam said, ‘back-up quick, they’re hippies.’ Through the car window, tents, row after row, flaps open, long haired men and women curled around each other …