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Index: Poetry & Fiction

Henry’s ad libs.

Lawrence Markert: ‘AGGARD, LEFT FOR dead, Henry stretches across two stuffed
chairs at the corner coffee shop, abandoned. He prays
the caffeine will reanimate his dazzled brain,

restore his brutish nature…’

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Vignettes (V)

Iain Britton: ‘Like a juggler | he tosses cloud formations
amongst shifting updraughts | he catches | tosses |
calls them by name | the woman beside him’

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Partita for solo violin.

Ruby Turok-Squire: ‘I lean into a passing
note, away
from where it went, circling

the spine’s rod
in a slow wind
I do not feel on my skin.’

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Two villanelles.

Zanaib Ismail: ‘The dew runs clear as a phantom’s silhouette.
A stigma put this flower in disgrace.
The darkness of my mind snips it.’

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Hefted.

Gary Evans: ‘We’re motoring across the fields and down the track in the dark before dawn. The newborn lamb sits tucked away in my coat, zipped right up, so just her little head peeps out. The wind whooshes in my ears, eyes streaming with the cold. An orphan’s only got a couple of hours.’

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Two poems.

Ruby Turok-Squire [from ‘Snow’]: ‘see the dots
as unhappened kisses

searching out their mouths
eye-whites

keeping secrets
not even they remember’

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New York Hotel.

Ian Seed: ‘Here I stopped because I could not remember how to conjugate the verb. In any case, I had an excuse not to continue for at that moment a military parade appeared at the end of the street. It was led by a general in a jeep. ‘

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Winétt de Rokha: Three poems.

Winétt de Rokha: ‘The word becomes a butterfly of the night,
bats its wings, stops, opens itself to unforeseen pearls —
catches at an echo that rolls slowly
away, dividing and dividing again, and chases after its own flight
like the mane of a comet as it dissolves.’

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‘Shrinking cities’ and ‘Small station’.

Alan Zhukovski: ‘A village can look so much bigger than cities, whose high-rises loom in each suburb.
A countryside minute can sometimes be longer than days in the shrunken dimension.’

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Six poems.

Lewis Oakwood: ‘Their bones grind together as they walk round and round

the old orchard, where I watch and listen to the dead:

“we lost our tomorrow and in that blackest night we are

afraid that you have forgotten our names.’

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Italian Lessons.

Ian Seed: ‘Yesterday evening when I stopped as usual to say hello and try out a little more of my Italian on Tiziana, I saw, from the corner of my eye, Anna walking down the street hand-in-hand with her fidanzato, her tall, blue-eyed, but (thank God) balding beloved. She was smiling at something he’d said. I tried not to look at her, but when they passed, Anna turned her head vaguely toward me. Her green eyes caught mine for a moment, then turned away.’

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Y.

Pierre Voélin: ‘in the distance the processions move on

and he who is listening
behind the wall of foliage
remembers the promises of your name’

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Two poems.

James Russell: ‘While he fronts his oratory and we voice
the sweet breezes from our belvedere

we are agreed that he is growing fond
of himself, rather as did Jerry Lee Lewis after

his first hit (so we reminisce between sighs).’

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Gold.

Martin Sorrell: ‘The greatest part of Victor’s pleasure was that calico music, which he relished as fully as he could by closing his eyes and letting his ears fill with the engine note, which grew as each machine reaffirmed itself over the round hill, then passed directly overhead, descending to the landing strip, sometimes battling headwinds coming off the sea. He learnt to distinguish between the sound the various planes made. Eyes closed, he arranged them in his head as if he were a composer.’

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‘After Tranströmer’ and four more poems.

Colin Honnor: ‘Glimmer cradled light on the waves of leaves
after the olive light on dusty leaves, after
the grey-green and black rain
into the nets, you he all of them
ritual, half-year’s rite to gather
threshing the filled branches with your canes
the olive rain, the hard bitter stones.’

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