Tuesday, 17 September 2013


I'm just a dog barking,
I tell my wife who's upset
with my yakking on and on
at our weekly meeting
on a Saturday morning
stationed in our recliners
facing forward as if we were
in the same row on a plane 
with the middle seat empty.

I tell her eventually
any dog will stop barking
if you give him a bowl of kibble
or let him in the house
or find his ball and play fetch.
Or do what my mother did
when I was an infant bawling 
and woke my father who faced 
work as a lineman the next day.

My mother would get out of bed,
grab her old bathrobe
and whisk me to the rocker.
Even to this day,
many decades removed,
it's the best solution:
Put a breast in my mouth
and silence will ensue.
Eventually I may even coo.

Donal Mahoney

Donal Mahoney lives in St. Louis, Missouri. He has had poems published Ancient Heart Magazine and other publications in the United State, Europe, Asia and Africa.

Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Tidalwave Making Moon

Decades lived by finding hope 
on the cliff.
The cliff remains but hope 
is gone and mercy
has taken its place, donning a revised skin.
Surrender is not gentle or shallow, 
does not come with a sigh but overtakes with a shudder,
a whimper, sleep.
I am branded as mush like the crawling thing 
that early summer created – clear and stripped of lasting form.
Corners blend then curve and curve again to make a sphere.
Searching is only born from blindness. Perfect vision comes
with the maiming of everything 
non-essential, when the only
essential is love and being alive to excite clouds into paintings.
The bountiful children 
clutter on the doorstep, have
one bed, two pillows for their many nesting heads. 
This they have, thin soup and no winter boots – 
each one giggling freely, sweetly at the first falling snow.
Branches are lizards I have broken before. Their thorny teeth,
a blessing to swell the stream 
of immediacy, covering me completely with oily holy sludge 
I have been trying for weeks 
to wipe from my nostrils.
Rubbing clean like singing – crescendo, couplet, and just breathing in 
as part of the song, holding breath, building in the stillness. 
Slowing awakening from the pressure, containing force 
in a tight-tongue swirl, movement starts, and cannot stop, 
until it beats out a haunting, lingering completion. 
What is left is the chilling joy 
of mutual mercy 
needed, received. Blood 
becomes a false dream, 
and the moon, and money too.

Allison Grayhurst
Toronto, Canada

Friday, 24 May 2013

Boat Sailz Split, Croatia

Paper boat, 

you sayz.

To hold the weight of waterz
airz and unknownz sparkly thingz,
like canz, ringz, birdz and grandpa'z gun.

Me suitcase is ready wizz
a piece of a dense cloud 
hair spray and night-iz 
and some pair of daily daggers too. 
for in case of hunting. fishez. them look sou less

Problem iz, we're too heavy for-
you catchez me mouth and sayz it must be you wrist watch
and us take it out. 
we goez up North wizz a paper 
boat bigger an' bigger forests made it.

the clutch of me hand is of one fruitz, dark oily ink suburb of rose nettly
plum me savez for dis big stomach 
wizz a little mouth inside. we knowz not how long 'coz--
we only listenz to whalez in dark or knowz its kickz in morningz,
but time stayz on shorez. 

Afrodita Nikolova

Home country: Macedonia
(temporarily living in England)


Wednesday, 1 May 2013

Calling It Love

Black Sea, palm tree dreams,
recorded Springsteen’s Badlands,
philosophic gift to a lover
borrowed from your room mate,
when you lived on a street named for lanterns.

Wrapped in your long black coat,
cross the city underground,
through heavy draped doorways,
nuzzle into smoke, and hot grog.
timeless sailors, reluctant to approach,
as if they knew something steel hidden in your pocket.

The last time you were here -
making cigarettes for a lover
borrowed from your room mate.
conversation a blur. Cinema forgotten,
unburdened in a room above the kiosk.
all sense of betrayal excused by adventure…

Next morning, walking home 
dry steel footsteps echo,
as even you found yourself
believing in what you knew was not
and calling it love.

by pd lyons

Thursday, 7 February 2013

Vulnerable Girls

I’d let boys blow
My innocence and stability away
Only to wish
That other, prettier girls were the same
Time would go by
My seeds slowly did too
Blowing in the wind
Of pheromones, testosterone, and sin

Then the storm hit 
Ripping my seeds into it’s grasp
Almost engulfing me from my roots
Asphyxiated under the profound grasp
All that remains
Is a few seeds
My dainty stalk
Sustained from the root
Where it begins, the pain

Sydney West, 
Harbert, Michigan, 
United States 

Friday, 1 February 2013


Rain pounds pebble-dashed walls
Rebounds and reverberates
against panes of glass.
A million tiny droplets, crashing, splashing,
Cold, hard concrete. No grip.
The water, frozen soft. 
Fine icy pulp covers the concrete floor,
black, almost greasy, 
Back wheels, black tires
Scrape and push and
spin and spin
Going no where.

Aimee Miller
Liverpool, England

Sunday, 20 January 2013

Far from Equilibrium

Amidst cacophony:
the wood's silence emits
hidden sounds.

A branch falls:
already risen from the dead,
an ancient shift decays.

Wolf on hill,
lichen, resin, pine,
old day, smells.

Little bird 
on top of a mountain pine 
sings the blues.

Pine cones
in the wood's cemetery
await resurrection.

Shadows caress 
mingled pine needles 
lost to their trees.

Canopies cascade
in defiance and embrace 
of natures flow.

In the wood
canopies don't argue
about space.

Gnarled roots
bust the paths
& feet.


The mill on the hill
landmarks the village below:
the signs say so.

A pathway's trees & fields 
conceal an extended motorway 
revealed only by its noise.

A conjuring trick, 
like a rabbit out of a hat, 
galaxies in all directions.

Lost on the hill,
you track extensions, 
cell phones & satellites. 

Fear grips 
the gut, a gradient 
of civilization! 


Behold in your air
the majesty of nature,
which you cannot share.

Not even with her,
who, like you, will disappear.

Further down
season's rushing river,

stillness & motion,
dissipative & liberating. 


The story lingers on
after the moment's gone;
a memory forms.

In presence space, 
different intervals compete: 
a homecoming.

Existence is mortal, 
order out of chaos, eternal,
time ephemeral. 

The way is strewn
with paths not taken
on looking back.


City street names: 
ghosts that cast us as shadows
into their sunsets.

In sunsets: 
shadows grow longer 
than time's arrow.

Suburban wasteland, 
rubbish littered allotments, 
a wreckage for the bins.

Spring 2012, 
it's never too early 
for radiant false cherry.

Park signs:
wash the animals
after touching them.

Trees watch us 
hide our roots 
in heavy boots.


Evening sierra:
the clouds giving depth
to escaping colours.

robin ouzman hislop

Originally Published The Poetic Bond 11 (2012)


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