Tuesday, 27 October 2015

A poem by Jill Sharp

A Brief History of Flies

Once they were small and silent, elite
airborne divisions of geometers; their mission –
to square the circle of a dining-room light-shade
in tireless pursuit of the perfect right-angle.
If they mutinied to an occasional
hypotenuse, causing spasmodic scuffles
beneath the bulb, they were always
back to their corners. Alighting,
they’d patrol at a respectful distance
and wait until you’d left the table
before taking their turn on your plate.

Now they’re all wideboys with ASBOs
banging round the kitchen like marbles,
torsos by Rambo, wing-design nicked
from the jump-jet. Why wait
for grub to be plated up
when you can dive-bomb the pot?
The leader squats on the worktop
rubbing his legs at the thought
of an almighty carve-up; a media chef
with his fuck-off wrist action
sharpening the knife.

First published in Orange Coast Review 2015 and in Jill Sharp’s pamphlet Ye gods, published by Indigo Dreams.

Jill Sharp lives in Swindon where she runs writing workshops at the Richard Jefferies Museum. Her poems have appeared most recently in Envoi, Orange Coast Review, The Interpreter’s House and Mslexia, online at Ink, Sweat & Tears and Nutshells and Nuggets and in anthologies including Fanfare, The Other Side of Sleep and The Book of Love and Loss.

Tuesday, 13 October 2015

A poem by Iris Anne Lewis


I am the sea,
that pounds on the cliffs,
that grinds up the rock,
that eats at the land.

I am the land,
that pastures the sheep,
that nurtures the grain,
that succours the town.

I am the town,
that barters the goods,
that hauls in the boats,
that founded the church.

I am the church
that cares for the soul,
that offers up prayers,
that rings out the bell.

I am the bell,
that tolls for the dead,
that chimes from the deep,
that calls from the sea.

I am the sea,
that pounds on the cliffs,
that grinds up the rock,
that eats at the land.

Iris Anne Lewis is a writer of poetry and short fiction. Originally from Wales she now lives in Gloucestershire. She has been published in the magazines Domestic CherryGraffiti  and Scribble as well as in the anthologies Kissing Frankenstein and An Eclectic Mix Volume 3. She has been invited to read her work at the Cheltenham Literary Festival in 2012, 2014 and 2015.
She composes most of her work while out walking with her faithful walking companion, Hector. Sometimes she even writes it down.  Please find her on Twitter (@IrisAnneLewis) and say hello.

Tuesday, 6 October 2015

A poem by Mark Farley

Hugs are more important than potatoes

I made a group 
on Facebook 
called 'Hugs 
                   are more important than potatoes'
And it was long ago

First posts were puns 
on nature
How appealing, said 
   the common tater
No need to waffle on

Then came a wave 
of pictures
a heart-shaped potato 
  a tuber-hugging kitten
    a lonely unhugged spud

After two years of silence
    while potatoes and hugs
   returned to the world 
  in which they wait
 when not needed

Those less-important potatoes
And those more-important 
Received a hefty dose
                                    of spam

I logged on
to attack said spam
 To hunt it down with knife
 and spade
Spam deserves its fate

And it was then I noticed
that Facebook shortens names
According to the group's title:
   Hugs are more important 
   than pot

Should I change 
the group name?
   Should I rearrange 
      the text to make
         a safer shortening?

Or should I just look
 and smile
  and maybe laugh
   or giggle
And move on with my life

Mark Farley is a freelance writer, web developer and occasional moustache-grower. He was raised in Zimbabwe where he survived two dog maulings, a swarm of killer bees, and being run over by a horse. Now he lives with a trio of invisible robotic cats in Swindon, UK. Please find him on Twitter (@mumbletoes) or Facebook (
https://www.facebook.com/mumbletoes) and say hello -- he'd love to hear from you, especially if you enjoyed the poem! You can read more of his work on http://mumbletoes.blogspot.co.uk/