All posts filed under: Ephemera


‘Red Hen’ and other poems by Shirley McClure

Maternity   I want to have poems by Caesarean section wearing my Infallible lip gloss   and counting on my designer obstetrician. I will keep my bump discreet,   drink litres of San Pellegrino, strive to avoid striae gravidarum, laser them later if it comes to it.   I want to live a normal life despite the media, and when it’s time,   my lines will glide out raring to open their lungs and wail as true as any natural birth.   Published in Clifden Anthology 35, 2013   Red Hen   We know nothing about hens, yet find ourselves in charge of half a dozen.   The odd girl out – you call her Mrs.One – loses her footing in the mud.   You carry her into the hen-house with piano player hands.   Still there the next day, she has turned her blunt red beak to the wall.   We talk to neighbours about red mites, infections, wonder if she’s egg-bound.   We fill her bowl with cabbage-leaves, stroke her tight wings.   …

Martyrdom by Kristina Marie Darling

Martyrdom   I never imagined love as a cause for suicide. But there we were, surrounded by all of the tell-tale signs: a breadknife, a withered corsage, a white dress with some ruffles along the bottom.   The night before I sensed that something had gone terribly wrong. He told her, brushing the hair from his eyes, how her sonnets failed to turn at the volta.   Now she’s gliding along the surface of the lake. Her hands folded like the knot on a small bouquet.   So he tries and tries to wake her. He looks at her perfect wrists, nearly submerged: cold skin , a silver watch, every bracelet fastened in place.   Martyrdom is © Kristina Marie Darling, from Brushes With (Blazevox Books 2013)   I did a brief reading of Kristina Marie Darling’s Brushes With on my Open Salon blog Kristina Marie Darling Blazevox Books An Index of Women Poets

And Other Poems

This is a brief note about the And Other Poems blog which is owned and written by Josephine Corcoran. What a breath of fresh air the blog is, judging by contemporary availability of good poetry (and critique). To say that poetry is sorely neglected in the face of market-forces is a wild understatement, but more polemic anon. “And Other Poems is simply a quiet, uncluttered place to read poems by different writers posted by Josephine Corcoran. The blog’s aim is to give readership to poems which would not otherwise be available, for instance poems no longer elsewhere online, out of print poems, poems published in print but not online, and new, unpublished poems by established writers. Poets have given permission for their work to be featured and copyrights remain with the poets.” I had been seeing some of Josephine’s link on Twitter for a period of time, and as always was gladdened to see the advent of blogs and websites dedicated to the reader of poetry. Quite a few blogs and websites deal in modern and contemporary poetry in …

The difficulty with muses

It seems that muses, those shadowy goddesses who influence writers, are limited under current editorial and employment injunctions to give inspiration alone to great male poets. Or so Simon Gough would have us believe. Muses apparently perform some type of quasi-sexual inspirational function and it doesn’t matter if they are girls or boys, once the poet is a dude and his inspiration is carried through the ages to the makers of poetry. I wonder (aloud) if the linked article had been written by a female poet, a woman writer – would the muse issue be a bit more interesting, or complex ?  Simon Gough “There’s no reason on earth why a muse should have to be female.  Whatever the truth of the matter (and uncertainty still rages in the higher corridors of intellectual power), the identity of “the fair youth”, to whom Shakespeare dedicated so many of his sonnets is almost immaterial. The one certainty is that he had a muse, who provoked   ‘But thy eternal summer shall not fade Nor lose possession of that …