Monthly Archives: December 2017

this job has us in its mouth and is shaking us about in its teeth by Martin Hayes

I am not a silent poet

as we stumble from one bill to the next
just about managing to keep food on the table
and a roof over our heads
apart from the last week that is
because that’s when we have to start with the lies
the borrowing
the asking of favours
that all put together
hopefully will produce just enough
to get us over the line
and into the next month

this job has us in its mouth and is shaking us about in its teeth
as we stumble from one hangover to the next
trying to balance the drinking so that it has as little effect as possible
on the job
the woman
the kids
and our hearts
that seem to want to just pump their way out of our chests
as our minds can’t face anything else
other than another drink
another taste
of that freedom

this job has us in its…

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Meghan Markle’s Dress by Antony Owen

I am not a silent poet

To clad a sister of Grenfell would not look as lovely as you.
An oak panelled council room disputes the two costs of blood and monetary,
a three-bar fire can keep the poor coin-warm and Grenfell had twenty-three tiers,
and a million tears, to dispute the two tiers, and precious tears shed of fire and water.

How very left wing of me.

To clad a red-blooded woman in a dress that could fireguard a thousand mere subjects,
I did the math over my cornflakes and very Un-Brexitly sighed at my patriotism,
hard to deny how the warmth of your glare billows into the cold at the Prince
not dissimilar to all the little princes and princesses asleep in the choky robes.

 How very body of the bird of me.

To keep a homeless man warm a rich boy can set fire to ten pound notes and guffaw,
the queen…

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A Tuesday by David Chorlton

I am not a silent poet

The internet provider has,
once again, failed
to provide this morning
while a softening of the darkness
behind Four Peaks promised
that the sun would rise.
The television news was,
as usual, lacking optimism
with a train whose maiden journey
ended buckled on
a bridge with traffic stalled beneath it
in a row of angry headlights.
When the topic changed
to the Tax Bill, No Signal
floated on a screen turned
black. The goldfinches arrived
on time, just as the desert
turned rose where it climbs
up the side of the mountain close by.
The radio efficiently reported
on missiles far away and
roads blocked close to home
while the bedroom window
framed a hummingbird drinking
from a leaf and the light
still wet from Sunday’s rain.

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There comes a time by Michael Peck

I am not a silent poet

There comes a time that we must look at ourselves for what we are and where we have been. Plowing over our dead beneath the ground, compost for the next growth of war presented wrapped like Christmas presents in glory, righteousness, and all the mumbo-jumbo created by those who never send their own sons and daughters to war. Never fought themselves except in the trenches of political campaigns promising glory, bounty, endless prosperity for the few. Never for those who are the collateral damage, those whose children die in the land of plenty of hunger and preventable disease. No, they are the forgotten, the never born ones who are never even spoken about or given names. The time is always now for change but change is bound by the chains of expectation and the plotting onward of what has gone on before. Oh, the beautiful lie of endless growth that…

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Grenfell II by Barbara Donne

I am not a silent poet

Tell me how to impose
a structure
What nouns
rhythm, rhyme
I have no template
I start
and the line
Imagine shadows
trapped in windows
who were not cut out for this
every step of stair beneath them
No-one expects to decline
‘We will burn…
have burnt…
are burning’       
 ,,                                                                                                                                                                               …

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From the Crow’s Nest by Stefanie Bennett

I am not a silent poet

Why would anyone
Want to be
Rich and
When the rest
           Of our
Affiliates are
So poorly
Of mixed ancestry [Italian/Irish/Paugussett-Shawnee], Stefanie Bennett has
published several poetry titles, a novel and a  libretto, and worked with
‘No Nukes’ Arts Action For Peace. Stefanie was born in Qld., Australia in

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last rites by Martin Hayes

I am not a silent poet

the look of laid off 53 year old men

unable to stop the tears

welling up inside their battered eyes the sight

of their broken bodies

walking out into the sun

for the last time the stink

of death as they start to split mocking us

still employed controllers that at least

they are now free again the pain

ripping them up the three kids and woman

they haven’t told yet the nine years left

on their mortgage and endowment payments

the collection

handed over in a manila envelope and the hurt

and utter uselessness they try to block out

as they buy large tequilas for everyone

in the pub across the road waiting

for the last of the last bells to arrive

and everyone to walk away

from them this time

for good

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The Last Recent Reading of 2017

Thanks to Billy Mills for this excellent review of ‘broken stories’.

Elliptical Movements

Language of Objects, Text & Images: Murdo Eason, Sound: Brian Lavelle, Blind Roads Press 2017, ISBN: 978-1-9997718-0-5, £10.99 plus P&P.

Bone Ink, Rico Craig, the now defunct Guillotine Press, but available from the author for 20.00 Australian dollars.

The Orchard Keeper, Susan Connolly, Shearsman 2017, ISBN 9781848615601, £6.50

A Day that you Happen to Know, Nic Stringer with illustrations by Lucy Kerr, Guillemot Press, £8.00

Broken Stories, Reuben Woolley, 20/20 Vision, ISBN: 9781907449031, £9.50

Lang_obj.jpgLanguage of Objects is a collaboration between Murdo Eason of the Fife Psychogeographical Collective and Brian Lavelle, sound artist and the Edinburgh Drift project. It consists of a book containing photographs and texts by Eason and a CD of a sound piece called Sullen Charybdis, theBlue of Scarabs by Lavelle, the music responding to, and in some ways mirroring, the book rather than accompanying it in any narrow sense.


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Respect by Sara Dennis

I am not a silent poet

Finally, he agreed to leave

On one condition

I had to swear that

I Would not start a new relationship

For at least two years

Because that would be disrespectful

To him.

I kept my mouth shut. Again.

But in my head, I said to him:


Let me tell you about disrespectfulness.

You disrespected me each time you slapped me.

You disrespected me each time you pushed me.

You disrespected me each time you punched me.

You disrespected me each time you kicked me.

You disrespected me each time you spat on me.

You disrespected me each time you stole from me.

You disrespected me each time you lied to me

You disrespected me each time you controlled me.

You disrespected me each time you raped me.

And now I am free,

And now, I have self-respect.

I do not need yours,

And you do not have mine.

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I am not a silent poet

(In 10 easy steps!)

  1. Fill the kettle with water in preparation.
  2. The second you hear the psychopath’s feet hit the bedroom floor, switch on the kettle.
  3. Place teabag in cup: DO NOT ADD SUGAR OR MILK AT THIS POINT.
  4. Silently will the kettle to boil faster.
  5. Put the spoon, sugar bowl and milk carton beside the cup.                                               REMEMBER: you will have to act fast!
  6. Take deep breaths to ease your panic as you hear him cough, piss then start his decent down the staircase.
  7. As soon as the kettle clicks, pour boiling water onto the teabag, add two heaped teaspoons of sugar and a splash of milk.
    REMEMBER: he must have his tea very strong or there will be repercussions.
    TIP: Steady your hand as…

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