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Index: Poetry & Fiction

Nine poems.

Veroniki Dalakoura :’From the pile of rubbish, you went up with your dual essence, with what ultimately gives substance to the quest of man. Melodies were heard everywhere. Heaps, a pile of dirt, indeed dried-up earth. A fruitless search. Voices, joyful screams—what little songs—all together bleating with moans.’

‘Last kind words.’

Peter Riley: ‘The song was recorded in 1930 in a makeshift studio in Grafton, Wisconsin, and issued by Paramount Records as‘ Last Kind Words Blues’ on one side of a 78 rpm shellac disc with the musician’s name given as “Geeshie Wiley”. It’s not a simple lyric. It’s not about slavery, but slavery is there in it. It’s about the victims of war, but forgets that and after verse four goes off into transferable formulae (floating verses).’

Tarn’s ‘Hölderliniae’. 

Anthony Rudolf: ‘The intensity and power, the imbrication and musicality, the driving rhythm and complex syntax, in short the poet’s brain work and heart work, generate a singular and beautiful book.’

‘Echo Plus Star Equals’ and two more poems.

Simon Smith: ‘early valentine
seasons out of sync
each echo all
in the Greek
is to sing didactic
poems from the heart
& kiss the air’

To the muses.

Five Poems By TOM LOWENSTEIN.   O MUSE, WHEN I put my cuff to the sugar bowl and you come up smiling, how I love to play hide and seek with you, for aren’t we equally untrustworthy? And when you pretend sometimes to let me win, how charming but unsafe it feels to maintain, at […]

June haunting.

Alan Morrison: ‘Am I a revenant paying him a visit,
A revenant who thinks I’m still living, a ghost
His woozy thoughts have unwittingly brought out
From the cobwebbed boughs of his mind’s shadow wood…?’

Two uncollected personal poems.

Peter Robinson: ‘I didn’t know them, and don’t believe they have been published until now. They do not appear in Derek Slade’s composition chronology for 1990. Both of them are written out in Mary Ellison’s hand. The introductory reflection inscribed above ‘The First Footnote’ reads: ‘Based on a happy marriage to Joyce Holliday Roy is very good at relaxed yet probing friendship….’

Trees the Seed.

Peter Larkin: ‘How does the seed ascend to tree?     how does a tree descend from seed?      how they both pre-offer, re-predict, a participation they never seek        sudden reachables off each obliquity horizon’

‘Wanton’ and two more poems.

Michael Egan: ‘beneath the chandelier a dance
we are sipping champagne from mirrors
yesterday a trawler broke
swallowed into ice off the coast of Norway
to wake to planes within prayers’

The Present Dystopian Paranoia…

RJR Johnson: ‘From the very beginning, defense was spectacularly ineffective. The targets were ripe. Biodefenses were nonexistent. Invariably, deepening internal divisions, especially in America, had made clear thinking impossible. Absent foxholes, artillery and invading armies, blind hatred of their fellow countrymen had made it impossible to understand they were at war even as it unfolded before their very eyes.’

Three poems.

Anthony Howell: ‘On the night I notice my infection.
Paranoia’s nothing but the truth.
Notoriety of our local murder rate
Encourages our black youth to read the papers.’

Dreamt Affections.

Peter Robinson: ‘Has she been modelled from the life –
but composite? Somebody lost?
Someone I had to say goodbye to?
Or is she from that other England?’

‘Cambridge’ and two more poems.

Ralph Hawkins: ‘we turn away
and drive across the golf course
towards the sea and
the estuary opening’

“Customer” “Relationship” “Management”.

By SASCHA AKHTAR. Introduction By Simon Collings. ascha Akhtar’s “Customer” ”Relationship” ”Management” takes aim at the moral bankruptcy of a social-media industry which manipulates users’ data for commercial gain, and which fails to adequately control the spread of damaging misinformation. In a post-apocalyptic future, referred to as ‘The End Time’, a group of students are […]

Back to the Drawing Board.

Michael Buckingham Gray: ‘Lifts the red-tipped paintbrush. Drops it in the water and stirs it around. Pulls it out and dips it in the blue paint and paints from the top down. Then lays the paintbrush across the top of the glass and sneezes once more…’