Issue 29 September 2022


Editor's Comments

As the various COVID lockdowns and the more recent invasion of Ukraine have taught us, freedom is something that many of us take for granted until it is threatened or taken away from us. The large number of submissions to Allegro 29 tackled the theme of 'Freedom' in a variety of ways. It was hard work reading through them and selecting the best. I hope you enjoy reading them.

Sally Long


birds come home from

paradise and sing songs

the silence recedes



the fields

what's lurking out there



It's been a month of war



what the tear hides

spring is playing hide and seek


а winter feeling creeps into my heart

а tear freezes and doesn't dry up


inside the child the wizard dies

and becomes an adult 

Mykyta Ryzhykh 


On The Famine Way

My feet started aching just before dark
while evening flattened the shadows into blades
that stabbed the fading day in the back.
By the road lay a tiny pair of shoes;
old, dusty and worn. No one else was there,
so I went on towards the setting sun,
squinting in the glare of discovery,
till something made me turn around and see
a girl of eight or nine, thin and dressed in rags,
step into the shoes. She looked where I was headed –
on to Abbeyshrule, Clondra and Strokestown –
then walked the other way towards Longwood,
Maynooth, Dublin and the ocean called Hope,
leaving no trace, no name, no regrets.

S.C. Flynn



I had spent all morning arranging
stones stolen from the garden,
imagined treasures from another world.
Polished brightly, mirrors of bedroom light,
I laid them out, neatly spaced, display-cards
painstakingly written in gold, exotic names.
To the left was my silver jubilee coin, cased
in plastic, tin foil metal on soft velvet green.
No visible scratches, I wrote it was the
lost crown jewel. To the right, wild flowers,
garlands worn by fairies, tamed by princes,
picked from the secret side alley
that I was scared to walk down after dark.
And then my mother’s forgotten books,
their yellow paper smelt of old churches
and the weekend jumble sale where rows
of creased spines huddled together in
cardboard beds waiting for new owners.
Who knew what hands had worn thin
those pages? Whose minds had built adventures,
mystery and deceit, old castles now forgotten?
What nodding heads? Child-eyes radiant-green
at night? All was set for the incoming crowd:
neighbours with smiles and cheap nylon clothes;
visitors flocking from the end of the road, still hot
from the late May sun; perhaps strangers bused
in from afar, who, somehow, somewhere, had
heard of my great show. No one came, of course,
but I sat long into the afternoon where
the silence was magic, and outside the heat
cooled and the clouds of distant adult laughter
were elephants, thick-legged, roaring through the sky. 

Marcello Giovanelli


The young women’s Poisoning Club

A knock at the door, and here she is.
Nervous, gloved, her voice a whisper-
I hear you have a perfume for my husband. 

The room, cool as a glade.
A shelf of tiny jars gleam in a drift of sunlight,
shades of water, tied with silk.

Nothing to see but a clarity.
The essence of rain, the scent of barely there,
the faintest of breaths, a whispered promise. 

A tiny vial, I hold it in my palm.
Enough to ease his sleep. A few drops,
the lightest of touches, and he will be gone. 

He isn’t kind you see.
The woman shows me the bruises.
I tell her, 

first he will lose his voice, his eyes will start,
his mouth will dry, he will lose his waters,
he will become as parched as paper, 

then convulsions, fever, finally death.
Make sure you shut the door between the worlds,
afterwards you must weep, I will teach you the steps. 

Louise Warren 

Giulia Tofana was an Italian professional poisoner who lived in Rome. She invented a perfume, containing arsenic, lead and belladonna, known as Aqua Tofana. It was slow acting, thus untraceable. She sold it mainly to women who wanted to get rid of their abusive husbands. She was caught, tortured, and died in 1659. Belladonna: also known as deadly nightshade. The berries are highly poisonous. Symptoms include: Loss of voice, loss of movement in the hands and fingers, dilated pupils. Victims become excitable, paranoid and delusional. Eventually fever, convulsions and death.



This steep ramp

Meant supposedly 

Unwittingly for

My wheelchair

Is not freedom.

One lad sees 

That I am struggling,

Pushes me up the ramp-hill


Into the pub,

For brew and smiles. 

Marc Isaac Potter


Every Twenty Years

  in America, it seems,

in ourselves 
    as African people
         w/African culture 

                 from the steel cage 
                    Oppression forged for it 

                        & flees 
                           @ large
                               from state
                                    to state 

And it should. We've made for Freedom
like our tribal
                             forebears were.

After all, 
we carry 
             traces of 
                the Motherland
                    in our blood 
                             & decolonised minds— 

Dee Allen


Paper Snowflakes    

We enter the pod and peer, unmasked, 
through its Perspex window, tap 
the microphone - testing, one two, one two.  

We wait like prison visitors, hands clenched 
and rollercoaster stomachs. A faux tree 
twinkles through the division, struggling  

to create a festive ambiance. Your distant hum 
approaches - the door clunks open, you 
amble in with your key worker.   

Disbelief stiffens your face; it has been  
nine months, locked down with no walks, 
music therapy or Sunday dinners at home.  

Dad and I chit chat, trying to quell the silence,
your thoughts unspoken, wondering 
why we don’t whisk you away home.  

The carer joins in, recalls how Bohemian 
Rapsody always captures you, the Halloween
lights that still swirl on your bedroom ceiling and  

the last minute scramble to snip hippie locks.
We all relax when you sit, face 
slackening into a smile, your fingers   

attempt to mirror mine through the screen.
Too soon it’s - Goodbye love, I promise  
we’ll see you very soon, New Year’s day.  

We leave reception, masks on, clutching  
a card of you, giggling in a Santa hat 
and covered with your scribbled kisses.  

Knowing we’ll miss seeing you rip  
open our sack of presents, reindeer 
leaping across your shirt, our Boxing Day  

stroll together in Perry Hall Park 
and your avalanche of paper snowflakes,
I feel a blizzard inside me -  

- and can’t forget  
how you turned to shuffle out, 
my high five left hanging at the screen.

Eira Needham


Memory and I 

The trouble with this elusive element lies in its capture.
Not there, kaput, empty, blank. Its disappearance is euphoric. 

Has the sensory recording equipment collapsed, failed, packed
up or just stopped? No response, data recovery failure, nothing.

Yet survival in the world is necessary. Imagine a world with no
backup, re-play or fast-forward. That’s a tough call for survival. 

Luckily, some grooves in the equipment run deep — family,
friends, physical location and mundane details keep me running. 

Other data seem hugely irrelevant to store in personal
Consciousness as all is stored on the iMac! 

The memory bank rejoices and in merriment tosses deposits
from its vault into thin air. 

With nothing to protect and defend, security defects and departs.
The newfound freedom is exhilarating. 

The Teacher’s commands ring true. No hefty withdrawals in the past.
No promising gains in the future. 

Cheques are drawn in the present. With full attention riveted
in the Now. The freedom tasted is delirious. 

The record lies smashed. Yet the music must play, set to different lyrics.
Reinventing, adjusting, tuning, to on-the-spot wavelengths. 

New, fresh, funny and immediate. 

Rupa Anand


What Remains

Digging another trench for my blighted potatoes
I found a skeleton. Until now I had never believed
the grim tale of a previous tenant 
whose wife had clubbed him to death with his own spade.

There seemed to be no other explanation
for my discovery. Tired of her man’s foul temper,
his drinking, the frequent beatings,
she had split his skull cleanly like an uprooted clod.

No one commented on his sudden absence,
since farmers, tired of their drudgery and shamed
by their failure to maintain a living,
often disappeared south to the mines or the sea. 

It seemed to be an excellent starting point
for a true crime novel, charting the rotation
of their marriage, its vengeful harvest,
the one sod lifted and buried beneath another. 

Local histories had revealed no records
of the episode. I assumed she must have found
the new furrows he had ploughed
with his petulance, and let him sow angry seeds. 

If there were descendants, their estates
would be grass and sunflowers, their regular crop
the tin can, the plastic bottle,
their neat lawns admitting no ancestry but weeds.

I dropped the bruised spade. Gazing silently
at the ribcage that had run aground on the soil,
I called the police. The vegetable patch
sprouted tape, a tent and a swarm of white grubs. 

Later an archaeologist said the skeleton 
was probably mediaeval. Soon it was removed.
I was content. There would be no drama
in my cottage garden, no novel, and no potatoes.

Jeff Gallagher


And breathe…

 If you


To be suspended

In the north-east Pacific

Spiriting yourself around

In the amniotic half-light

Helpless and exhilarated

A blue whale swimming

At cruising speed

Takes fifteen


To pass you

Bearing her precious calf

And her thirteen ancient songs

Steve Lang


Judith And Holofernes

For years, he cored pears
as a penance for autos-da-fé,
performed on unwitting children
in poor weather, but his head
shackled with greed
made its way to a plate,
and his Judith looked more beautiful
even than Klimt’s.

Cole Henry Forster


The Oban Ferry 

The harbour wall, the spray, the stall
piled deep in sea food’s silver,
and from the port, MacBraynes’ big ferries
cross to the islands. There are rucksacks,
iPads, surfers, sandwiches,
as tourism plumps and settles in the lounge, 

but around and above them, swirling,
are centuries of island crofters’ lives,
the swathes of seagulls and their generations
which swoop and shrill possession’s joy,
in a sky which shivers with bright day,
which shudders in an oceanic grey. 

Robert Nisbet


(1990, after the fall of Communism)  

the men from the van are busy 
with red buckets and green shovels  

packing away snow 
into corners of the Citadel          

the city
didn't keep up the payments on the American ploughs  

the Danube
crackles and catches gulls on the hop  

an old Comrade walks across the river 
with a hunting gun and a bucket of grit  

colossal statues of the undefeated worker 
punch holes in the sky 

in cold water flats
the unemployed are passing around a cigarette 

building a hard nostalgia 
for the old days  

Gareth Writer-Davies

The Field

The first field
I ever saw,
where that sense of freedom grew.
It became a simple playground
for each childhood season,
as I roamed
along its living face.
A place of early discovery
where at night before sleep
I listened to it breathe;
dreaming softly of the day’s
innocent blades of green,
those modest flowers,
with miraculous birds which wheeled
across the unspoilt
memory of its unique space.

Byron Beynon

Grateful for the Arrival of Weather  

It travels mute from the east, slants      
its opaque sheets of bitterness
to cuff cheeks, numb lips,
tug coats and steals small feet. 

Tree tops lean over to whisper the obvious;
crows make a gusty argument of it.
Your gloved fist a tight grip 
as blue sky is shovelled into gutter-grey. 

Words pegged in iced air hang  
beside weeks frozen in shocked truth.
Your silent disbelief shifted from window,
door to inconsolable. Today 

we are trees in the garden
as I pray to the heavens for a miracle.
Your eyes, fixed on a promise,
see them first: one, two, three 

then harum-scarum,
criss-crossing, linking, spinning
in white abandon to earth.
A surprise to eyes and lashes 

they insist on blessing skin. You watch
as I hold out my tongue, take each star in.
Muffled inside your wariness, at last you  
loosen your grip, let free a jump and skip.   

Eve Jackson

But it ain’t exactly there 

My neighbor talks about freedom as if he could touch it.
As if it might arrive in the delivery truck
after being ordered by email
and paid for with a credit card.
As if it spoke English.
The coyote 

who comes down from the mountain after dark
to look for water and stays for hours
after sunrise
knows that freedom has something to do
with going where you don’t belong
and not caring about being stared at.
Then there’s a version
for people who write rules that fit only themselves 

and say they are for everyone.
Freedom comes along the street whistling
Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony
but it’s more like the line in Leonard Cohen’s Democracy 

that says “it’s real, but it ain’t exactly there.”
Listen to the mountain howl
at sundown when
it’s time to wander. When boundaries
soften and
the pond shines brightly back
at a full moon.

David Chorlton 


Warm front reaches our shore
on a breeze from the Canary Islands.
My favourite bench for morning coffee
is free, the weathered, wooden one,
the plaque to Justin ‘Glider’ Daniels,
whose life ended at twenty-one.
He would be twice that age now,
a young man to me,
more than seven times nine. 

Glider, the bay is lively with red and yellow kayaks
skimming through calm waters at high tide.
The Stena ferry sails for Scotland,
a pied wagtail lands by your bench
to peck at my traybake crumbs.
And for a few moments, Glider,
I sit here and am free
from the future and the past.

Tim Dwyer

This beautiful dissolve  

We have learned there are particles 

continually passing through us 

as though we are a shadow 

in the vastness of their space. 

We do not fully understand  

their movements, wrapped  

as they are in the mystery 

of their own minuteness. 


Oh let them snag on the shadow 

of all I am as they pass on through. 

Not in a way that hinders 

or even slows their journey, 

but in a way that takes  

fragments of me with them, 

out into the vastness  

of this beautiful dissolve. 

Jon Plunkett


(remembering John Clare)


Oh, look! A brand new fence is going up;

they’re bringing cows to the hay meadow,

ending twenty years of open access,

restricting us, and our dogs, to the old path.


Summer grasses blow in the breeze

- cocksfoot, timothy, wild oat and rye.

Bees, and butterflies in pairs, dance

from daisy to buttercup to clover.


We’d grown used to roaming the field

where an ancient spring

gives unfailingly to fox, deer and badger,

even in the driest summer.


The farmer’s wife agrees it’s a shame,

but times change, and grazing is valuable.

He says there’s dog shit all over the place

and that it’s his right to fence us out.


Funny how she smiles and explains

while he postures and asserts his authority.

I want to argue the toss, but I ignore him,

smile back at her, nod and move on.


Philip Dunkerley


Land of the Free

Homicide, suicide, what’s it to me?
We all carry guns in the Land of the Free.
Free to be Christians and free to be whites -
The rest ain’t included in our Bill of Rights.
The rest want to come here (or blow us sky high),
They get smuggled in, so they cheat, steal and lie.
Servants and slaves since the US begun:
Tell ’em: Sit! and shut up! and don’t carry no gun!

Robin Helweg-Larsen

Double helix 

Standing in the shower,
glass water veins, spiralling 
down my arm,
I think about genetics and have 
a eureka moment,
thirty six years late.
My parents are not 

physically related! 
Having always thought of them 
as one, like an ocean merged into a sea,
I could never fathom how to part them.
But here I stand, a modern Moses,
reflecting on the quicksilver walls
rippling either side of me. Finally
free, I dare to dip a finger into each
parent’s trembling body of water, only 
to feel – too late,
their cold, heavy brine,
surging up each arm. Filling me 
with a darker revelation. I
am the place where they meet.
The vessel they made to pour their love into. 
Their dream of becoming 
one, made real.
Throwing my head back for air,
I’m forced to watch as my parents flood 
out my mouth and fill the room, 
swallowing me in their complete abyss.
The brief dream of the self, suspended,
gossamer thin and empty
as a canal shopping bag.
A ghostly carrier,
no longer needed,
drifting in their gene pool.

Paul Fenn

Steel magnolia

In drops of May dew, shakes the head
a blue decoration of the garden,
It is the Lithuanian magnolia,
look, it seems to scold or want to pardon.

She is growing up, was once small,
fought her way through the others,
magnolia studied well, worked hard, and became tall.

Time passed, and magnolia the leader of the garden,
which brings freedom and beauty,
leaves are fresh, strong, and can harden.

She interceded for other flowers,
which fought with wild plants,
Lithuanian magnolia had strong dignity,
as the clock has the power of hours.

The magnolia showed off in blue colors,
magnolia skillfully conveyed the position,
she will not be deceived, neither magicians nor shufflers.

Lithuanian magnolia is a miracle in nature,
find her, searcher!

Vyacheslav Konoval


They never come, quick from ritual,
dripping peat marsh or tarn water, 
the cord still round their throats,
mouths grimacing at the depths.  

Nor – hoared by frost, hands bound –  
descend the snow-capped peaks alone,
blood thawing on their broken brows.  

They don’t scoop their gutted selves
off altars to spill from blades again,   

nor – blistered, black-legged –  
choke forth from the flames’ truss   

for what time’s distraction forgot –  
those gods who haunt each oblation,
demanding What of us? What of us?    

Craig Dobson

Narcissus Poeticus- the Pheasant’s Eye 

Tiny flaming hearts nod in the wind
off the sea, their frail petals light
as snow. A sweet and fragile scent 

drifts along the path as if sent
as a greeting on the cold north wind.
Miners tramped home in dimming light 

at day’s-end, eyes growing used to light
after the dark tunnels. This scent
came to them back then on the wind. 

Come spring, wind was scented with light. 

Rebecca Gethin 


For years I red-circled your due day 
in calendars of dark planets and ice moons. 

You'd be thirty now. Like a distant star,
unnamed, you grew in silence alongside  

your older siblings. I'm waking from a dream 
where you say you're looking after us,  

the way I couldn’t help you, and you
tell me to stop rerunning the past,

trying to change a fact when it's the feelings
we're left with that need to transform. 

How hard to accept love doesn't judge, but wants 
only to forgive and be free, when parts of me 

like the back and sides of my tongue 
can taste only bitterness, sourness, tears.  

Mary Mulholland




After she tasted fresh air

Her mother made her favourite tenga,


Called everyone home

And mixed her salty tears with all things beautiful.


Even her little postcards, crayon etchings about birds and freedom

Were served for the guests.


She remained quiet through it all.

Occasionally, there were jokes and pickles passed around


Overall, a solemn affair

Till she broke the air’s silence


With a song that bellowed from her stomach

The pit of her cell, the ground outside, her verandah,


The blue air, friends in college, her neighbours

Birds on branches, and even that radio sputtering from childhood.


When she finished her mother asked

If she would like a little more.

Amlanjyoti Goswami

Cats and mice

A shadow, 
she's nimble, smart in practical shoes.
Her mum approves but doesn't know they power
her marches. At the train station she is invisible
to the watcher police. Knows all about their lists.
She considers the buffet, then baulks thinking of pals
incarcerated in Perth Prison, force-fed, released,
re-arrested. Isolated, they're tied, tubes thrust in throats,
noses, rectums. Liquid dripped into stomachs and lungs. 

Coughing, choking, arms, legs gripped. Steel gags
screwed tight opening mouths wide, wider. Windpipes
torn and still No! Still the cause, the Hunger Strike.
Tough decisions, such sacrifices for future freedoms.

 Knowing what's at risk she steels herself, turns Valkyrie.
Goes over the plan - the gathering, the King's arrival.
She clenches her fists, wishes for the company of ravens.
Yes, they will win the vote, they will gain independence. 

Finola Scott


The ground here’s sliced open
by the sea, revealing 

its bones drywalled together
by stack on stack on stack 

of ancient seashells. Sun lights
the chalk like a migraine, 

almost too bright to bear.
Painted ladies landfall 

onto the turf furring the rock.
These butterflies have crossed 

from the Magreb, via France,
orange dots escaping 

from a pointillist painting
into Whistler’s blue and silver nocturne.
                                            One year
they skittered the whole way north,
chasing me to Skye, falling 

like autumn leaves
as I carried my toddler 

through cotton grass specked
with their polychromatic wings. 

This year, their ambition is less sweeping.
They will fringe England’s southeast edges 

as the land retreats each year,
shrinking back 

from these African travellers, folding
in on itself. 

Fiona Cartwright




Dee Allen is an African-Italian performance poet based in Oakland, California U.S.A. Author of 7 books--Boneyard, Unwritten Law, Stormwater, Skeletal Black, Elohi Unitsi and his 2 newest, Rusty Gallows and Plans--and 56 anthology appearances.

Rupa Anand is a spiritual seeker and started writing in 2008. A cancer diagnosis in 2020 encouraged her to take up poetry more seriously. Rupa has a BA (Hons) in English Literature from Lady Shri Ram College, Delhi. Her poems have been published in Indian spiritual journals. Her interests include gardening, birding, photography, travel and animals. She lives in New Delhi, India with her husband, daughter and numerous cats.  

Byron Beynon coordinated Wales's contribution to the anthology Fifty Strong (Heinemann). His poems and essays have featured in several publications including Agenda, The London Magazine, Wasafiri, Poetry Wales, Cyphers, Wild Court and the human rights anthology In Protest (University of London and Keats House Poets). Collections include The Echoing Coastline (Agenda) and Where Shadows Stir (The Seventh Quarry Press). He lives in Wales.

Fiona Cartwright is a poet, mother and conservation scientist who lives near London. Her poems have appeared in various journals including Butcher’s Dog, Atrium, MagmaMslexiaInterpreter’s House and Ink, Sweat & Tears. Her debut pamphlet, Whalelight, was published by Dempsey & Windle in 2019 and she tweets @sciencegirl73.

David Chorlton is a transplanted European, happy to be living close to the desert. His poems reflect his affection for the natural world, as well as occasional bewilderment at aspects of human behavior. He has several poetry collections, the newest of which is Unmapped Worlds from FutureCycle.

Craig Dobson's been published in Acumen, Agenda, Allegro, Antiphon, Butcher’s Dog, Crannóg, The Frogmore Papers, Ink, Sweat and Tears, The Interpreter’s House, The London Magazine, Magma, Neon, New Welsh Review, The North, Orbis, Poetry Ireland Review, Poetry Salzburg Review, Prole, Stand, The Poetry Village, The Rialto, Southword and Under The Radar. 

Philip Dunkerley is active in the poetry scene of South Lincolnshire, where he lives. He runs poetry groups, reads at open-mics and is a reviewer for Orbis. His work has appeared in journals, webzines and anthologies, such as Poetry Salzburg ReviewMagmaIS&T, and Poems for Peace.

Tim Dwyer’s poems appear regularly in UK and Irish journals, recently in AllegroOrbis, and The Stony Thursday Book. His chapbook is Smithy Of Our Longings (Lapwing). He grew up in Brooklyn and now lives in Bangor, Northern Ireland.

Paul Fenn's poems have been longlisted in the National Poetry Competition and The Plough poetry prize and he has most recently had poems published in Ink, Sweat and Tears, The Frogmore Papers, One Hand Clapping, Dreich magazine and Obsessed with pipework.

S.C. Flynn was born in Australia of Irish origin and now lives in Dublin. His poetry has been published in many countries, including Bangladesh, Nepal, Spain and Italy, and most recently in Madrigal, ZiN Daily, Obsessed With Pipework, Mercurius and Trasna.

Cole Henry Forster is a poet living and writing in Montreal, QC. His work has appeared in publications in Canada, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

Jeff Gallagher is from Sussex, UK. His poems have featured in publications such as Rialto, Shooter, Dreich, Littoral and The Journal. He has had numerous plays for children performed nationwide. He was the winner of the Carr Webber Prize 2021. He has been a teacher of English and Latin. He also appeared in an Oscar-winning movie. He has no handles.

Rebecca Gethin has written 5 poetry publications. She was a Hawthornden Fellow and a Poetry School tutor. Vanishings was published by Palewell Press in 2020.  She was a winner in the first Coast to Coast to Coast pamphlet competition with Messages. She blogs sporadically at  

Marcello Giovanelli is a writer and academic from Leicestershire, UK. He has had work published in Ink, Sweat and Tears, Green Ink Poetry, The Poetry Village and Poetry Plus. He tweets @mmgiovanelli

Amlanjyoti Goswami's new book of poetry, Vital Signs (Poetrywala) follows his widely reviewed collection, River Wedding (Poetrywala). Published in journals and anthologies across the world, including Poetry, The Poetry Review, Penguin Vintage, Rattle and Sahitya Akademi, he is also a Best of the Net and Pushcart nominee. His work has appeared on street walls of Christchurch, buses in Philadelphia, exhibitions in Johannesburg and an e-gallery in Brighton. He has reviewed poetry for Modern Poetry in Translation and has read at various places, including New York, Boston and Delhi. He grew up in Guwahati, Assam and lives in Delhi. 

Robin Helweg-Larsen has been published in the Alabama Literary Review, Allegro, Ambit, Amsterdam Quarterly and other international journals. He is Series Editor for Sampson Low's 'Potcake Chapbooks - Form in Formless Times', and blogs at from his hometown of Governor's Harbour in the Bahamas.

Eve Jackson’s work has been published in a wide range of journals, magazines and anthologies. Winner of the Frogmore Poetry Prize and this years Brian Dempsey Memorial prize in the single poem category, also a past runner up in the Manchester Cathedral Poetry competition.

Vyacheslav Konoval is a Ukrainian poet whose work is focused on the most pressing social problems. His poetry was published in more than 14 literary journals and translated into Polish and French. Konoval is a member of the Geer Poetry Group and the Federation of Writers in Scotland.

Steve Lang, though from Scotland originally, has travelled widely, especially in Africa, and currently lives in El Salvador with his family, Steve’s second poetry book, Cuarentena, a collection of 40 poems written during the Covid lockdown, has just recently been published by Resource Publications.

Mary Mulholland’s poems have been published in journals, anthologies and won or been placed in competitions. in the UK and US.  Former psychotherapist and journalist, she lives in London. Her debut pamphlet, what the sheep taught me, was published in July 2022 by Live Canon.  @marymulhol

Eira Needham is a retired teacher, living in Birmingham UK. Her poetry has been published in print and online. Some recent publications are Poppy Road Review, Green Silk Journal and Autumn Sky Poetry. She has been ‘Featured Writer’ in West Ward Quarterly where she is regularly published and once came first in Inter Board Poetry Contest

Robert Nisbet is a Welsh poet whose work has appeared widely in Britain and the USA. He won the Prole Pamphlet Competition in 2017 with Robeson, Fitzgerald and Other Heroes. In the USA he has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize four times in the last three years. 

Jon Plunkett was born among the granite and drumlins of Northern Ireland. He now lives and writes in Scotland. He is a widely published poet and poetry slam winner as well as a keen collaborator, often working with musicians and artists to present poetry in new ways.  Jon is founder of The Corbenic Poetry Path. His collection A Melody of Sorts was published with Red Squirrel Press. 

Marc Isaac Potter (they/them) …  is a differently-abled writer living in the SF Bay Area.  Marc’s interests include blogging by email and Zen.   They have been published in Fiery Scribe Review, Feral A Journal of Poetry and Art,  Poetic Sun Poetry, and Provenance Journal.   Twitter is @marcisaacpotter.

Mykyta Ryzhykh 
from Ukraine (Nova Kakhovka Citу) has been published in the journals Dzvin, Ring A, Polutona, Rechport, Topos, Articulation, Formaslov, Colon, Literature Factory, Literary Chernihiv, on the portals Literary Center and Soloneba, in the Ukrainian literary newspaper.

Finola Scott's poems scatter on the wind, on tapestries and magazines - The High Window, New Writing Scotland, I,S&T and Lighthouse. Red Squirrel Press publish Much left unsaid. Dreich publish Count the ways, Tapsalterrie publish Modren Makars: Yin. Visit Finola Scott Poems on FB. Finola enjoys treating grandchildren and blue-tits. 

Louise Warren’s first collection A Child’s Last Picture Book of the Zoo won the Cinnamon Press Debut Prize (2012). In the scullery with John Keats also published by Cinnamon Press  (2016.) John Dust  V.Press  (2019). Sometime, in a Churchyard will be published by Paekakariki Press August 2022.

Gareth Writer-Davies was shortlisted Bridport Prize (2014 and 2017), commended Prole Laureate Competition (2015 & 2021) Prole Laureate (2017).  Commended Welsh Poetry Competition (2015) Highly Commended (2017). His publications: Bodies (2015) Cry Baby (2017) Indigo Dreams. The Lover's Pinch (2018) The End (2019) Arenig Press