Man it was that gouged blue stone
From your rugged slopes
Taking it by horse drawn tram
To build seawalls
And adorn prominent buildings
Leaving you wounded ;
A hazard to those seeking
Only to walk and climb.
And the Victorians
With their seaside fantasies
Made a deep cutting
For a funicular railway
Scarring you forever,
Placing a camera obscura
On your summit for tourists
To gawp at bathers,
Changing your name arrogantly
From Craiglais to Constitution Hill
Copyright © David Subacchi 2016
David lives in Wales where he was born of Italian roots. He has four published collections of his poetry and his Blog may be
found at http://www.writeoutloud.net/profiles/davidsubacchi
‘Craiglais’ is Welsh for ‘Blue Rock’. It is the traditional Welsh language name for the North Cliff in Aberystwyth composed largely of a blue tinged stone. Victorians changed the name
to ‘Constitution Hill’, no doubt to appeal more to English holiday makers!
The coracle is our mother,
she has carried us for eight days,
her skin protecting from sea by day,
the lashing of the wind at night
till aided by the waves’ contractions
she gives birth, propelling us
onto the marbled shore of this island.
Thirteen new born sons,
we have learnt well from our mother,
copying her skeleton to build
a place of shelter where all are welcome.
We are a colony of heaven, pilgrims
journeying to a new land where
our mother, the coracle, cannot take us.
Copyright © Sally Long 2016
Sally Long is editor of Allegro Poetry Magazine and a Creative Writing PhD student at Exeter University.
Enough throughstones for repair work,
two lines of face and coping ready,
plenty of hearting in buckets.
Kate waits. Then skips across the field.
She’s shaping air with hands again,
her yellow frock a summer’s day.
Now it’s raining God’s own hailstones
stinging her skin that sunburnt red.
Copestones, a line of ragged teeth,
make weight, keep the face-stones down,
hoping to drain the rain. It’s hearting,
that’s tightly packed, which fills the gaps.
Does God smother the light? she shouts,
waving her hands, always my wife.
She skips across the field and waits.
We know how walls are built to stay.
Copyright © Phil Wood 2016
Phil Wood works in a statistics office. He enjoys working with numbers and words. His writing can be found in various publications, most recently in The Centrifugal Eye and http://www.inksweatandtears.co.uk/pages/?p=10874.
The bulwarks you use to glaze your tenderness,
plating the smallness,
making it secure, the billboards hanging:
‘How elegant are my ramparts!’
The seven veils of flesh, its scattered furs,
wrapping the gift,
its cryptic, jittery contents.
The map of bones, its crossroads and wide streets,
dwindling to alleys at outlying points.
The goulash of moist, hot things that keep you ticking.
Copyright © Kitty Coles 2016
Kitty Coles has been writing since she was a child. Her poems have appeared in magazines including Mslexia, Iota, The Interpreter’s House, Frogmore Papers, Obsessed With Pipework and Ink Sweat and Tears.
Between Orion and the Plough
a blink of wing-lights. We
watch our shadow tip
across the moon. In valleys
unwanted light puddles, spreads.
On Stanage Edge the breeze
is fluid as family, the glittered sky
brittle as dried teasels.
Air traffic control is humming,
sketching new constellations.
We forget the names of stars.
Copyright © Julian Dobson 2016
Julian Dobson lives in Sheffield, England, where men call each other ‘duck’. His poems have appeared in publications including Brittle Star, The Interpreters’ House and The Poets’ Republic, and on a bus in Guernsey. He tries to post a poem a week at 52poemsinayear.wordpress.com
I still love Jimmy-the-Croak.
Though he’s a frog—a brass one,
hinged at his poop-point.
So that the top half of him swings back
in a body-shaped yawn and when closed,
leaves him dished and lidded.
When I was small he held two sweets,
or a couple of coins, a secret note,
folded small and square, or a bright
glass bead and a music-box key.
He could also snap down hard
on my brother’s poking finger.
Now he sits on a shelf.
One of the few things left of my Mothers,
kept since that terrible house clearance.
Sometimes, I still polish him.
Shine him up like gold, with Brasso
— the way Ma taught me.
Like she did when brightening brasses
was my Sunday-morning
The sharp tang of cleaner rises,
pulls me through time and I hear her,
saying ‘give it some elbow grease’.
Copyright © Miki Byrne 2016
I have had three collections published to date plus many independent poems.
HUE AND SKY
Up there are seven heavens.
Blue skies are jolly
with lashings of good cheer and cream
like the Famous Five going down to Devon.
Yellow is unrelated and gets away
with not really being yellow
but has that vitamin and is absolved
of a multitude of sins like causing cancer.
White is fluffy like cotton wool
and ‘fluffy’ is a word nobody
can say a bad word about
except for flying chauvinist pigs.
Silver complements rivers
and is just a rung below gold after all,
but since it’s like rivers
it has different issues.
Red is beautiful like truth
but gets a bad press
with all that mornings and warnings stuff
and frightening fluffy sheep.
Grey is complicated and lives on the edge,
with areas of the zeitgeist which
has spawned Celebrity Culture where
like the Middle East we await solution.
But the seventh is a felon to catch.
Undefinable beyond dark,
it lurks like a Freudian slip
and no one knows when it will appear.
Copyright © John Quinn 2016
I am an ex-teacher and persistent Dundonian previously published in Poetry Scotland, Northwords Now, Southlight, South Bank, Dundee Writes and Poet and Geek. I have performed Slam Poetry on the Stanza Festival but like the Scotland football team didn’t progress to the later stages.