Issue 14 September 2017

Issue 14

Editor's Comments

I hope you enjoy reading this issue which is the last general issue of 2017. As usual my task as an editor was challenging and the number of submissions to Allegro continues to grow. I would like to make a plea to poets intending to submit their work to Allegro. Please read the submissions guidelines and follow them. If you don't follow the guidelines I will delete your work without reading it. With the quantity and quality of submissions increasing I do have to be fair to the majority of poets who stick to the requirements. 

Sally Long



Cat Rip

Cat rip, rubber-slither jettisoning eye-shot blood
from quick to dead, fast-tracked and facile: fact.

Fur from warm/clean/sleek to streaked,
pulled cold and matted flat to tarmac
black and red  (and red... more red...)
– a carpet red from quick to dead.

Come then the day-long line—
the muttering motormourners miling by
to offer final coughing scoffing scant
hard hasty petro-diesel disrespects.
Believe me, it's the least that they can do
and it's the thoughtlessness that counts.

2 a.m. – still in state.
Stiffened, splayed, displayed
sprawling stretched as in mid hunting-flight…

Its quarry (let's assume there was one)
– unaware of having been, on this or any
other such occasion, spared predation –

Ken Cumberlidge

The orchid garnish

A day of sea air whetted
my wife's lust for fish.

We found a restaurant
overlooking Hyannis Harbor.
As we watched the Nantucket ferries
slide in and out of their berths,
she ordered lobster and scallops.

They come tented in asparagus,
crowned with a vibrantly purple
orchid whose fleshy mouth
is rimmed with an aureola of pink
- a provocative tongue sticking out.

My wife lays the orchid
on the table between us,
then attacks the lobster
with her hands. As she leans
over her plate to stuff succulent
lumps in her mouth, I glimpse
white curves inside her shell
untouched by the sun.

She licks the juices and butter
from her fingers then picks up
the orchid, drapes it over
her ear, flutters negligee
eyelashes, and aims a moonlight
smile. My mouth waters.

Eric Chiles

Anger Artist

My love drew from the time
she could dream.
In time she could draw anything.
And when she grew angry,
she reached for a pencil and drew.
The year her father died young,
she drew nothing but flowers.
The following year mammals.
The next, creatures of the sea.
On his birthday she draws till it aches.

My portrait, after we marry,
lies everywhere.
I tag the pictures in reply.
Our romance ends up
a war of scribble and line.
I no longer annotate.
Shared moments of mute rage
express a polite symmetry.
She rummages for paper,
I whittle pencils to a savage point.
We’ve hardly exhausted
all there is to argue.
But ask the anger artist.
I’m merely the face on the wall,
aging relic drawn to perfection,
by a loving eye for error.

Dick Altman

White Heron

At night, the nose of a stray dog loses its glow,
grey in the smoke of burnt foliage. A ghost walks

along a rice paddy; the dog barks and barks, yelps
until more dogs appear. A white heron flies. 

A row of dead march across a mosquito field;
thresh grass and leaves like a strong wind,
splash pools of frogs, kick old coconut husks.

A rooster flies high onto the branch of a tree;
the hard flap of his wings. A papaya falls 
to the ground, smashes bright

like the late afternoon sun, a cremation
in Ubud, orange flames that swathe her body;

she becomes the black of night.

In the heat there is no blood; red turns
to black, turns to grey. Ash hangs in thick smoke;

all her flowers burnt. She is finished,
like the ghosts that prowl the paddies.

Tonight she will walk the rice fields, wake dogs
and roosters, find other ghosts.

The sun goes down early here, the heat
in the mountain brings clouds, cool wind
and heavy rain; a time to rest.

Everything is quiet now;
only a white heron flies the blue-black sky.

Ion Corcos

Your Son and Cavafy

You were expecting a normal boy
but he’s been dipping into
the poetry of Cavafy,
taking the book with him everywhere,
reading it in his bedroom to his friends.

Your enquiries on the internet
confirmed your suspicions.
Perversion, sodomy, homosexuality –
none likely to earn pennants
to be pinned proudly on the wall.

You blame it all on an absent father.
He drank heavily, couldn’t hold down a job
and beat you often.
But there was no doubt he was a man.

You sit by yourself,
hating your own tears.
A whimpering little girl, you call yourself.
You can’t help it.
But it’s you
so at least you understand it.

John Grey

That seagulls would grieve for you, circle down
as cries still wet, almost water, making the sky
look for a place not asking for more salt –mourn

the way a whitewashed wall is handed over
though a boy in sleeves is waiting nearby
with his initials around someone no longer there

–stone by stone it will come back and she
by the worn-down buttons on her blouse
that fell open to point a finger at the hole in the air.

Simon Perchik

A Hush of Blackberries

For the first time in years
I respond to you—

the rain,
with silence

even as you play little sticks
across my rooftop.

If you were to diminish
your flurry of stems

all that you want me to say
would yet remain unspoken.

The glaze of incoherence
you’ve left

still stirring above me
contains more meaning

than you ever intended—
kisses of togetherness

descending to a level
of unwanted compromise.

A hush of blackberries
rises to a place once loved.

Richard King Perkins II

Just the Way Things Are
for E. M. Delafield

Rare, this copy begins to fall
apart, corners creased, end-papers
missing, faded page.
Blemished, the green-spine
between the book-ends, is just, intact;
but if we cherish the gossamer thread
of the words it protects, it
can scoop us into the still buzzing pulse
of the inner plot...

At the time of her prime,
she bought new notebooks,
sat in the alcove of her provincial drawing-room,
sharp pencil in hand. Outside,
across sunny fields, the Culm;
river-views to die for; inside,
her close circle of family and friends
went on wittering, while she kept on and
on relentlessly fixing, subverting the crux
of her company's guile. Eventually, when rains
and war had arrived, juggling threaded veins of life,
she moved through barriers of pain and despair, back
to a place of girlhood long forgotten: up
against the haystack in a pool of mid-Devon
light, she's listening to the voice of her mother
reading to her, from the faraway pilgrim's story -
'Come, pluck up, heart, let's neither faint, nor fear'.

Julie Sampson

 Notes: The Way Things Are, first published in 1927, was reprinted by Virago, in 1988.  Edmée Elizabeth Monica Dashwood, née de la Pasture (1890-1943), later called EM Delafield (or EMD) lived and wrote at her house, Croyle, near Cullompton, Devon, from 1923 until her death, in 1943. Three years after the tragic loss of her only son, in 1940,  EMD was taken ill; although her remaining months were spent in considerable physical suffering, she continued to write to the last hours of her life. When EMD was a child the family stayed at East Butterleigh, where, in a nearby meadow her author mother, Mrs Henry de la Pasture,  read to her daughter from The Pilgrim's Progress.

Mrs Danton’s corner garden in May

wrist-bone brittle
as sticks
pick-up pick
your pieces  may
may   you
and mend
               in May

 for      sweet-
 peas and
your steps
and door -

  in earthenware
pots corms

waiting for the next white rush
-  hyacinths

Julie Sampson

Night Swimming – Assumption College 1979

They call it the duck pond,
lily pads, wild grass and sprigs
of daises around the edge.
The breeze makes circles
of the dark water,
skeeters skimming across
on paper legs and a gang
of boys in their underwear
jumping in together,
resurfacing with a breast stroke,
or a crawl, a collective scream,
their beer cans floating to the surface.
They pile out laughing,
running up the grassy hill,
all but one,
a red head, still and silent,
everything gone numb.
He thinks:  don’t leave me
as the raucous voices fade
across campus.

But they do.

Kevin Carey

Self-Portrait at Saint-Remy

Why is the wall behind you moving?
Because it is like the sky.

Why is the wall not moving?
Because there is no sun or clouds.

What is the color of your eyes?
They have no color, they are green.

What are you looking for?
There is nothing on which to focus.

What is your occupation?
I work with colors and landscapes.

Where are you going from here?
To a place I know nothing about.

Is music playing in the next room
I don’t know, I don’t listen anymore.

Are you friends in the garden?
They have left me, it is raining.

Why does your face seem white?
Because it is the color of madness.

Why is your hair and beard red?
It is a color for which I would die.

Paul Alexander

Rat Poison

Barn owl, she's come again to the barn,
perched in the timbered rafters,
head at inhuman angles.

Scattered below, pellets of fur and bone
twitched and coughed-up carelessly
to nestle beside a once blue tractor
and rusty bucket. Throat loose,
she's ready to make the air bristle.

Off kilter, her ears can hear
a shrew's breath in the tussocky grass,
or the scurry of a vole,
the meander of a mouse.
Sensing prey, she rides the swell of a breeze.

Expecting a rattle in her talons,
a struggle of size,
she wonders why this rat surrenders.

Later, well fed, she roosts.
A feeling inside her body, fire rising.
Gathering her screaming head
she ventures outside,
seeks the solidity of a low branch.
Struggling to stand or stay steady
she thinks of twilight, the sound of rain.
She thinks of home. Everywhere falls
to whiteness.

Belinda Rimmer

Distaff: Pandora

I was made as a punishment.
Imagine what that does to a girl’s self-esteem.
The gods made me beautiful and deceitful
and set me up to fail.
Hephaestus made my body,
Hermes taught me to lie,
but how could I have known
what was in that box?
What plagues and desolation
I would release?

Later, after Zeus rained down the waters,
my daughter, Pyrrha, would repopulate the world,
each stone she threw becoming a woman,
each her husband threw becoming a man.
I am the grandmother of humanity,
but all people remember
is that damned box.

Cruelest of all,
what remained was hope.

Terri Simon

Telling a Fortune

Come in, my dear, and sit in that chair.
What’s that? No, no crystal ball, no incense.
Just a table, and two chairs, and you and I.
Before you pay me, I must give you a choice.
Choose between two fortunes-neither of them lies.

One lets you look in a mirror,
What you will do, who you will bed,
The future as others are able to see you.
Most are content with that.

The other? Ah, that’s much more painful.
I will flay your image and look inside you
At what you become and what you fail to be.
Your essence as it purifies or taints.

Clients are unhappy with these revelations,
But recognize their truth
Even though they rarely change.
So what will it be?

Inner or outer, the money is the same.
My actions will not vary.
But I will be looking at you
Either dressed up or naked.

The procedure? Absurdly simple.
Your elbow on the table, fingers straight out.
I set my hands on each side of yours.
And pass them up and down, just not touching.

Your hand feels pressure and warmth.
Both are phantoms but not unreal.
Your focus is through your hand
As I begin to know you.

I ask no questions, that would be fraud.
Only begin to tell you
Of what you will have done
Or what you will become.

What’s that? No, of course I understand.
Most people prefer to know
The course of their life rather than
The curses of their nature. Shall we begin?

Ed Ahern

Climbing Maula Ali Dargah

There is a climbing 
that faces the clouds 
that hide the magenta 
sun scattered like 
jujubes on the floor of
the sky, the colour of pink 
oranges and yellowing violets.

There is a climbing 
that hears the bird, a dog 
barking, your hair
rustling and a third person 
not there. Voices are heard 
last. Song last but one. 

There is a climbing 
of coincidence 
the azan gurgles from behind,
unexpected, slightly off key 
then seven azans join in 
one after the other. one sung 
by the boy with the uncracked 
voice, substituting
the woman washing the vessels, 
humming in tune 
one too soft perching on the 
withered branches of March. one an 
old man's pain knotted into stone
one perfectly right but never heard 
overlapped by every other tune. 

There is a climbing 
of spirit in the rhythm of 
this evening.  

Rebecca Vedavathy

Headers and Volleys

We kicked and flicked, passed
a ball that belonged to no one.
The houses stood in stadium
as we turned a tarmac plain

into a football pitch. Garage
doors rattled from our made up games.
Headers and Volleys was a knees
up, stretch of limb, balancing act.

Angling our lives, trajectory of what
we knew, all pulled from our bodies
as we tried to keep the ball
off the floor. Not allowing things to settle

then roll. We needed it amongst ourselves
so we understood the future. Keep
things up so our eyes knew where we
were at. This game developed us

more than anything else. It taught
us to stand on one leg, swivel a foot
for a new direction, leap high when
things were easier left to drop.

We chased shadows, tried to grab time
as if we owned it. Belted our anger at wood
and brick. Kept a watchful eye on those
amongst us. Wondering if they were going

to pass us anything light or heavy.

Gareth Culshaw

With This Ring

My left hand
is now unburdened
by a ring.
The ten-point
diamond, the thin band engraved
with your grandfather’s

an almost worthless
heirloom you
will soon pawn
or sell for scrap gold. No one
in your family,

not even
your sentimental
sister, will
reclaim it.
Twenty years on my finger,
it's as good as cursed.

M. Stone

Mourning not over yet

It harks back to the two of us, your car,
layback seats cranked up, serious talking,
no hope of happiness, can’t remember where,
grey trance of sky, waste land, silence,
an abandoned railway, iron stitched to weeds,
the last train’s haunting whistle gone, gone.

So many hours of longing, a supporting act
to so few saline kisses, ragged breath, wretched bliss.
Trying for stoicism, demented by raw ache,
dying slowly as most do, I believed my wound
would last forever, typical of young ego.

Lulled by beauty, coming across quiet clearings
on long, lone walks, familiar pangs of loss
quicken my heart, most of my forever now up,
being fundamentally right no consolation. 

Ian C Smith

Valley of Broken Wings

Praying foa rain
but only getting virga

is da unfortunate result
as da oblivious clouds move on.

Parched beneath da wishes
droplets nevah reach da ground

no mattah da dance
or da heavenly incantation.

One can dream
of streams and rivers

wit cascading watah
falling ovah cliffs.

It’s easy to imagine

but sometimes
so much harder to receive.

Da dusty soil
passing between fingahs

is testament enough.
It seems dat everywheah
da heat is taking its toll

and disappointment is soaring
in da valley of broken wings.

Heah is wheah all da optimists
step in wearing smiley faces

wit dere encouragement
of green buds and rainbows.

On many occasions dough

immediate happy endings
are just not in da offering.
It’s so sad to be da messenger
of terrible tidings

but sometimes
wen drought settles in

dere’s pretty much nutting
dat anyone can do.

Joe Balaz

Home Last Night

That man took the waitress
home last night, the waitress took the
flatware home last night, the flatware took
the leftovers home last night, the leftovers
took the pepper home last night, the
pepper took the pepper mill home 
last night, the pepper mill took the 
salt shaker home last night, the salt shaker 
took the sugar bowl home last night, 
the sugar bowl took the ketchup
home last night, the ketchup took the
napkins home last night, the napkins 
took the tablecloth home last night, 
the tablecloth took the table home 
last night, the table took the chair 
home last night, and then the chair,
the chair came looking for the man.

Laynie Tzena


It is so easy to press down a nib
on a piece of paper that isn’t yours,
tear a hole through it, 
disclaim it,
put it back into the folder from which it came,
and leave it (e)motionless.

How did we become this banal? 

Like the surges of a sea not having yet
felt the moon swathe between its rippling,
flat-lined without heaving, swelling, 
or even rustling the brim of its waves
to lap at the sky.

Melancholy knows well of your heart(h);
the embers knows of their last dance – 
fire and air no longer accomplices.

What words must I sing to burn 
through your paper countenance? 
Your seas portray a calmness your sky cannot
endorse. You have survived none of your mysteries
in the mirrors that have you betrayed – 
ground over your once humble barrenness. 

Sheikha A.


I wouldn’t change anything about tonight,
the hours are thick with poignancy, outside
two cats cry like women recently widowed,
keeling as if wrapped in a spool of fate’s 

My pen makes no sound on this white page – 
deathly ashen – representing the jaundiced
moon; my pen produces the blackness 
that aptly contrasts my yellowing thoughts
I haven’t yet written.

The clock’s ticks saunter off into the silence,
the hours remain thick and the cats’ cries
become one with the night. I wouldn’t 
change anything – except for your memories
and the mewling of my ageing soul.

Sheikha A.


The stridulation hauls me
up and out. Stridulitrum
in concert with the plectrum.
A nocturnal performance.
Electrically alert I
lash out into darkness.
Miss. Pianissimo now.
Silence. One that got away.
It slipped up from the river,
into the city. Pipi-
strellus and apus notwith-
standing. Sterility would
do the job nicely! Male fails!
Though bite not his. Proboscis
of fiendish famished females.
But the food chain? Bat and swift?
Miffed. Swiftly! The switch! Can’t stand
its presence. Fat cat sat there,
hanging on the wall. Exposed.
Stealth. Wealth of experience.
Telling blow. Explodes. No tell-
ing. That feeling! But oh! In-
delible. Remains of the
feast. Blowed if I can remove
it. The stain. The beast. My blood.

Glenn Hubbard

Country Church

Citizen’s Advice
Evensong: alternate Thursdays
Mr. Davis
dark oaken door
heavy leaden latch
clack! click!
span and spic
Help yourself!
20 pence
Realy lovd your Church!
children’s corner
yellows and blues and reds
Susan Hopkins (8): The Ox And Jesus And The Donkey In The Stable
the Green Howards
gave their
Albert Reynolds (23)
George Reynolds (26)
three steps to the altar
Numbers 12, 34, 102
men with beards
91 Whoever dwells in the shelter
leave it back with the rest
no Mary
Henry VIII
last look  

Glenn Hubbard


A little silence after a storm
Is really just a snake biding its time
Lying in wait, shedding its skin
And always ready to bite.
Is really a calculating accountant,
Tallying the number of people with you,
Multiplying it with two invisible hands,
And subtracting sympathy from it all.
A little silence after a storm
Is really a secret little porcupine,
Running into holes for winter,
Before winter strikes,
And whooshes into its bloodstream
To eke out forced stories
And painful memories.
Is really a table,
A quite brown mahogany one,
Sitting by the fireside and holding fruits in its bosom.
And sleeping quietly between thunderstorms.
A little silence after a storm,
Is a permanent guest in my life,
Is a temporary reprieve
And is clouds,
And is emptiness.

Anjali Bhavan


Don’t call me that.
I will not be defined
by withoutness.
What I know of loss is this:
it can break you
in half, in a thousand
thousand pieces.
You can rage at the rubble,
crawl through it
on your knees or bury
yourself inside.
   I choose
to refuse.
    One by one
I gather up the pieces,
run my fingers along
each jagged edge
as if reading the Braille
of my future.
          I will spend
my life fitting the jigsaw
shapes together. 
Though I lack a picture
to guide me, I will
make something
of these random ragged
shadows, patches
of color, maybe
some bits of light.

Joyce Meyers

The Way We Were
for Joni Mitchell

‘Cactus Tree’ was our song, the one
that lit a flame, when I heard you sing
and taped you, bruised and plaintive,
on John Peel’s Top Gear. Straight off

your gift possessed me, too young
in sixty-eight for you to even notice
how I tagged along: the one face
in the entourage who really got you

and realized that other men
would leave you wanting more,
while you danced on tables,
obsessed, as ever, with being free

in the candle-lit taverna where,  
scowling, I found you smooching
with a drifter you’d taken
into your bed all week.

And when you booked that suite
with its own Steinway grand,
I fetched you flowers that wilted
and fruit you didn’t eat,

too involved in writing songs
that soon the world would own,
but I was still the first to hear
played the way you meant.

David Cooke

Bleak House

Ours was not a bookish house
Except for the reader's digest
That stood on a Formica shelf,
Like a grand prize.

A beautifully bound 
mock leather book,
'The Odessa files 
and Stepford Wives'.

Still as headstone
 By eyes.

David Rudd-Mitchell

bird song

beyond the window
of this room
one tree
  leaves muttering
  in morning sun
from which
a single bird
  gloss black
  obsidian eyed
stares out
why anyone
would choose
to live like this
would want to live
inside this cage
    no bird

Nick Carding

This impulse to gather-
Crouched on a shoreline,
we cannot keep the waves
so we take the shell.
Our baskets filled with hunger days,
raiment of our parents twisted like driftwood,
cost analyses.

We stand at the end of a continent
Perpetual brace for impact encasing pupae,
bodies soften with vapor and waiting.
A prayer for the blessing of our wounds
A prayer for salted water
sift the blank spaces and the voids
until they no longer tremble in a riptide.

 Jessica Michael


Sheikha A. is from Pakistan and United Arab Emirates. She has been published in numerous literary venues, all of which can be accessed on

Ed Ahern resumed writing after forty odd years in foreign intelligence and international sales. He’s had a hundred fifty stories and poems published so far, and three books. Ed works the other side of writing at Bewildering Stories, where he sits on the review board and manages a posse of five review editors.

Paul Alexander is the author of eight books, including Rough Magic, a biography of Sylvia Plath. His poetry has appeared in PoetryThe Sewanee Review, Southern Poetry Review, Mississippi Review, The Vanderbilt Poetry Review, Poem, The Louisville Review, among others. He teaches at The New School in New York City.

Dick Altman lives in New Mexico.  His work first appeared in the Santa Fe Literary Review, in 2009, and won for poetry in the Santa Fe New Mexican’s 2015 writing competition.
American Journal of Poetry, Vine Leaves in Australia and many others have selected his work for publication. 

Joe Balaz writes in Hawaiian Islands Pidgin (Hawai'i Creole English) and in American-English. He edited Ho'omanoa: An Anthology of Contemporary Hawaiian Literature.  Some of his recent Pidgin writing has appeared in Rattle, JukedOtoliths, and Hawai'i Review, among others. Balaz is an avid supporter of Hawaiian Islands Pidgin writing in the expanding context of World Literature.  He presently lives in Cleveland, Ohio.

Anjali Bhavan is an 18-year-old college student. Her work was published in A Twist in the Tale, an anthology of short stories. Her work has also appeared in The Speaking Tree, a supplement of the Times of India, Esthesia magazine and Span, the magazine by the American Embassy in New Delhi.

Nick Carding is an Englishman now living in Croatia. His poetry and short fiction have appeared in print and online in the UK (most recently in Orbis and Ink, Sweat & Tears), USA, Canada and Australasia.

Kevin Carey teaches at Salem State University and coaches seventh-grade basketball. He has published three books.

Eric Chiles is an adjunct professor of Journalism and English at a number of colleges and universities in eastern Pennsylvania and was a print journalist for more than 30 years.  His poetry has appeared in Allegro, American Journal of Poetry, Apeiron Review, Asses of Parnassus, Chiron Review, Plainsongs, Rattle, Tar River Poetry, and Third Wednesday and other journals.

David Cooke’s work has appeared in Agenda, Ambit, The Cortland Review, The Interpreter’s House, The Irish Times, The London Magazine, Magma, New Walk, The North, Poetry Ireland Review, Poetry Salzburg Review and Stand. His fifth collection, After Hours, was published this year by Cultured Llama.

Ion Corcos has been published in Grey Sparrow Journal, Clear Poetry, Communion, The High Window and other journals. He is a Pushcart Prize nominee. Ion is a nature lover and a supporter of animal rights. He is currently travelling indefinitely with his partner, Lisa. 

Gareth Culshaw lives in Wales. He is an aspiring writer who has his first collection out in 2018 by futurecycle.

Ken Cumberlidge has been writing for 40+ years.  Recent work can be found online (Algebra of Owls / Ink Sweat & Tears / The Open Mouse / Picaroon / Spilling Cocoa / Strange Poetry / Snakeskin).  Currently living in Norwich, muttering and gesticulating in the company of an embarrassed-looking dog. Don't worry – the dog's fine.

John Grey is an Australian poet, US resident. Recently published in Sheepshead Review, Studio One and Columbia Review with work upcoming in Louisiana Review, Poem and Spoon River Poetry Review. 

Glenn Hubbard was born in the UK but lives in Madrid. Fluent in Spanish, he is poetic only in English. His poetry has appeared in The Bow-Wow Shop,SnakeskinThe Interpreter’s House and Algebra of Owls and will appear inThe High WindowCarillon and Bindweed later in 2017

Richard King Perkins II is a state-sponsored advocate for residents in long-term care facilities. He lives in Crystal Lake, IL, USA with his wife, Vickie and daughter, Sage. He is a three-time Pushcart, Best of the Net and Best of the Web nominee whose work has appeared in more than a thousand publications.

Joyce Meyers’ books include The Way Back (Kelsay Books, 2017), and two chapbooks, Wild Mushrooms (Plan B Press, 2007) and Shapes of Love (Finishing Line Press, 2010).  Her work
appears in The Comstock ReviewIodine Poetry Journal, and Slant, and she won the Atlanta Review International Poetry Competition in 2014.    

Jessica Michael resides in Prescott, AZ. She writes poetry, fiction, and adventure travel articles which chronicle her journeys around the globe.

Simon Perchik is an attorney whose poems have appeared in Partisan Review, Forge, Poetry, Osiris, The New Yorker and elsewhere. His most recent collection is The B Poems published by Poets Wear Prada, 2016. For more information, including free e-books, his essay titled “Magic, Illusion and Other Realities” please visit his website at

Belinda Rimmer has poems in magazines, including, Brittle Star, Dream Catcher, ARTEMIS poetry; Obsessed with Pipework; Sarasvati. On-line includes, Cloud Poetry, Picaroon, Ground, Writers Against Prejudice, Amaryllis. Some poems are in anthologies. She recently came second in her first Poetry Slam and won The Poetry in Motion Competition as part of Cheltenham Poetry Festival. 

David Rudd-Mitchell is a Slough based occasional poet.  His poems have been published in magazines including BLER, Lighten Up, Zen Space and the Projectionist's Playground.

Julie Sampson's poetry has been widely published in magazines and placed in several competitions. She edited Mary Lady Chudleigh; Selected Poems (Shearsman Books, 2009). A full collection, Tessitura, was published by Shearsman, in 2014 and a non-fiction manuscript, was short-listed for The Impress Prize, in 2015. Main website at

Terri Simon is a writer and a techie. Her poetry has recently appeared in Mused, Jellyfish Whispers, and Rat’s Ass Review. She lives in Laurel, MD with her husband and dogs. She’s works in IT, is interested in spirituality and usually has multiple craft projects in the works.

Ian C Smith’s work has appeared in, Antipodes, Australian Book Review, Australian Poetry Journal,  The Brasilia Review,  Poetry Salzburg Review,  The Stony Thursday Book, & Two-Thirds North.  His seventh book is wonder sadness madness joy, Ginninderra (Port Adelaide).  He lives in the Gippsland Lakes area of Victoria, Australia.

M. Stone is a bookworm, birdwatcher, and stargazer who writes poetry and fiction while living in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Her poems have appeared or will appear in SOFTBLOWCalamus Journal, and Amaryllis. She can be reached at

Laynie Tzena is a writer, performer, and visual artist based in San Francisco. Publications: BayouEventThe Lake (current issue), Sonora ReviewZone 3, among others. She received an Avery Hopwood Award in Poetry. Tzena has been featured at the Austin International Poetry Festival and on Michigan Public Radio.

Rebecca Vedavathy is a research scholar studying Francophone Literature in EFLU, Hyderabad. She recently won the first place in the Poetry with Prakriti Contest. She was also nominated to be on the longlist (English Poetry) for the Toto Funds the Arts Awards, 2017. She is writing to be a poet.