Richard Livermore – 2 poems



A handful of eyes
thrown up in the air


will see what they see
from multiple angles


much like the two
Picasso possesses


in defiance of those
who believe he is


dead and want him
back in the grave.








Nothing’s what
it would seem
it would seem
since everything needs
a qualification
to go to the very
top of the class


and have it out
with the teacher
of maths that Pi
turns all equations
to jokes
– at least until
infinity croaks.






Richard Livermore (1944, United Kingdom) has been published in numerous paper and online magazines over the years, in the UK, USA, Spain, Italy and, more recently, Romania. These include 14, AMF Logos, Asses Of Parnassus, Barcelona, Black Mountain Review (Northern Ireland), The Black Rose, Chanticleer Magazine, Chapman, Counterpoint, Decanto, Dream-Catcher, Envoi, Fat Damsel, First Time, Folio, Furry Fables, Global Tapestry, Haiku Scotland, In Between Hangovers, Inclement, Iota, Keep Poetry Alive, Never Bury Poetry, New Hope International Review, New Scottish Epoch, Northern Light, Ol’ Chanty, Orbis, The Old Police Station, The Other Merry-Go-Round, Poetic License, Poetry Scotland, Purple Patch, Quantum Leap,  Reach, The Reader, Rizoma, Scotia Review, The Scotsman, Seventh Quarry, Sol, Staple, Weighbauk, Wildflower and Your One Phone Call. His work has also been broadcast by the BBC. and has appeared on the Corbenic Poetry Path in Perthshire. Three of his poems have been translated into Romanian by Monika Manolachi and included in The Anthology Of Scottish Poets published by Bibliotheca Universalis. His work as also been published in book-form by Lothlorien, Diehard, Chanticleer Press, Elefantasia Press and Biblioteheca Universalis. For the past 15 years, he has also published and edited his own magazine called Chanticleer Magazine and its on-line offshoot, Ol’ Chanty, to which he has contributed many essays and blogs about poetry, philosophy, film, etcetara. Th Rest Is Silence is his third book by Bibliotheca Universalis.

John Dorroh – 1 poem




I lay in a dried out cornfield with my legs up

into the sky, a wishbone, yes, a chicken-shit


wishbone. A big green and yellow John Deere

began singing a lullaby, moving toward my


mouth, my heart, all of me and I let it chew

me up, remembering mama saying chew


chew, chew on this fish. It may have bones.

Damn straight. What fish doesn’t? Don’t talk


to your mama like that. Just sayin… Anyway

I heard the crunch but never felt pain until


she tossed me into the deepest part of the

river where the triplets died last September.







The verdict is still out whether John Dorroh taught any high school science; however, he showed up every morning at 6:45 for a few decades with at least two lesson plans in his briefcase. His poems and short fiction have appeared in Dime Show Review, Sic Lit, Poetry Breakfast, Suisun Valley Review, 99 Words, and others. He travels, bikes and hikes, and plays in the dirt when the weather allows.



Sharon Phillips – 3 poems

An Incomer


huge numbers of Roman coffins, human bones, querns and pottery were discovered, indicating a Roman occupation site – Encyclopaedia of Portland History


Winter among burial mounds, faces wind
-scoured, clothes mud-clogged, besieged


by low cloud, in our bellies an ant-creep

of fear. The mist came alive as it poured

past our camp. I feared it was witchcraft.
Some called me a fool. Summer is worse:


stuck at the world’s edge, I dream of home
where sunlight dazzles off white stone,


and wayfaring trees are in milky bloom;
where linnet song trickles, alexanders flower


green above the thin scurf of grey soil
and startled lizards jitter into the shade


of spurge or fennel, so quick there is

no knowing if they were there at all.



My grandfather’s garden


Slabs of privet clipped foursquare,
soil corrugated by hoe and rake,
rose bed bisected by a concrete path


and tea roses in decorous rows,
each the proper space
from its neighbours, pruned
in the correct season, they bore out
the catalogue’s promises
of shapely blooms and upright growth,
good health and glossy leaves.


Masquerade. First Love. Garden Party.
Home Sweet Home. Peace.
And a memory of my mother’s voice:
your gran and granfer weren’t
on speaking terms for years.





Schrödinger’s poem


the cat sits on my desk watches
my hand scuttle over the page
flicks my pen prickles my scalp


licks right paw wipes right
licks left paw wipes left waits
flicks my pen prickles my scalp


don’t let him you’re too soft
the cat sits on my desk where
my poem is stuck in a box


it can’t move lid’s too tight
no air wheezy purr of the cat
who scratches himself


he watches me write he prickles
my scalp he purrs he yawns
th-thunk he jumps down


to sleep on my bed my hand
scuttles over the page but
my poem is silent inside its box.
Sharon’s poems have most recently appeared on Amaryllis, The Poetry Shed and Ink Sweat and Tears, and in Picaroon and Sentinel Literary Quarterly. In 2017 she won the Borderlines Poetry Competition with her poem ‘Tales of Doggerland’ and was also shortlisted for the Bridport Prize.

Jemma O’Donovan – 1 poem



You wafted the thick fog of smoke

away from the space between us,

and in the same movement,

you beckoned me forwards.

Your feeble hands trembled

and you slurred an invitation

as whisky-filled blood pumped

throughout the body you inhabited.


I shuffled towards you in my slippers

and Saturday morning pyjamas

and you lifted me on to your lap,

your uneasy fingers digging into my ribs,

shaking under the weight

of someone who used to be a toddler.

The cocktail of whiskey and tea

embraced the both of us

while you embraced me,

your willowy arms and raised veins

holding on until you couldn’t anymore.




Jemma O’Donovan 


Simon Robson – 1 poem



Someone rich outside my bed-sit window –
there’s an Ascot forecourt,
showroom of them, shiny, black,
luminous workmen in orange bibs and braces,
baggy dungarees to disguise
their expanding guts,
doing the road maintenance,
digging six foot trenches,
laying electrical wiring.

He’s one of the lads, the driver –
a sub-contractor, the electricity board,
driving a Lamborghini to work every morning –
more electricity from the National Grid,
light and heating for us peasants –
he sits on a pneumatic drill all day,
bladder bursting, hammer and drill,
thinking of his French waitress girlfriend,
bending over in her nurses’ party outfit, silver
waitress service,
she never returns his text messages,
pictures of him naked in golden piss.

He works on site,
employing a couple of the lads –
a Lamborghini parked outside my bed-sit,
here on Grovsenor Road, the summit of
Eggars Hill, my paltry, urban existence,
Aldershot, Rigsby HQ.

I wonder about his tax and insurance,
the size of his wage –
the price of fuel rising, the price of his existence,
how far his petrol tank takes him, mileage –
six foot trenches to lay the dead into,
electrical wiring beneath the road, grit, tarmac, etc…

I’m confused, could it be
that one of the Russian workmen,
installing an electrical generator in the municipal
gardens, war memorial, red poppies for the war dead,
medals, laurel leaves for the victorious dead,
driving a Lamborghini to work every morning.
It’s parked outside my bed-sit window,
upward social immobility, I suppose, Theresa May,
the vicar’s daughter, going to hell –
a Lamborghini parked outside my bed-sit
window, shiny, beetle-black, waist height,
never likely to rust.




Simon Robson