Daily Archives: March 7, 2016

Suburbia by Kevin Cadwallender

I am not a silent poet

An individual has not started living

until he can rise above the narrow

confines of his individualistic concerns

to the broader concerns of all humanity.


                            – Martin Luther King, Jr.

In a garden in suburbia

a man puts a fence around

his garden, he likes to sit

in his garden and watch

the wheels turning on the

outside world.

his garden is roughly square

next door’s garden is an oblong.

all the gardens in the street

are different shapes, different

things happen in each garden.

a new family have moved in

they are different too, they knock

down all fences and take over other

people’s gardens, ruining the street.

the police stop responding to

your calls as they have more

important things to do.

the nice single parent from two doors

down has asked if she can pitch a tent

on your lawn and you agree to…

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Inside Raqqa by Lesley Quayle

I am not a silent poet

(after BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme)


My friend since boyhood, more like my brother,

said “Don’t walk home by familiar routes,

take backstreets, bombed out alleys, keep to the dark.

Shun light and open spaces. Avoid my mother’s house.”

I know his face so well that, when I close my eyes,

its calm companionship is fixed, aligns unsettling darks,

a gentle spirit, bright as uncut roses, a happy, smiling soul,

my friend since boyhood, more like my brother.

All day my curiosity burned, infatuated with questions,

with what and why till, as the sun blistered blood stained

blackened stones, I followed the smothering dusk,

mesmerised and terrified, to his mother’s house.

My friend since boyhood, more like my brother,

crucified, the naked, bleeding, headless corpse

stretched like a goat for skinning, haemorrhaging horror.

The street is death-shaped outside his mother’s house.

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Red Mist by Jane James

I am not a silent poet

I just saw red, he said, though

in truth she never wore that colour, makes you

look like a fucking whore he’d tell her, nor

did she ever dare to wear red lipstick, bright red

nail polish, dirty fucking tarty rubbish,

he said.

The red mist descended, he kissed her

with his fists, it ended with her broken body

weeping, red life seeping through

the bedding, blending

new stains with

the old.

She was asking for it, he told

the judge, brought it on herself, and

the judge was sympathetic, tempering

his sentencing, in the light of his experience.

He knew all about the red mist and

the judge’s wife knew, too.


Jane James
is horrified by the idea of writing biographical information.
She has had poetry published in some anthologies.
She has performed at events, slams, festivals.
She lives in Wolverhampton.
She has lived a life.

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