‘The Unbelievable’ by Victoria Adukwei Bulley

after Martin Carter They enjoy talking in the dark.           They are just voices. With the power cut his voice is air, warm, passing           over her ear – the ear is catching it. They have no obvious bodies,           nor histories to set alight. They are, both of them, black as the breath           of the universe, blank as the space between stars. They are a part           of … Continue reading ‘The Unbelievable’ by Victoria Adukwei Bulley

‘On the lifeside’ by Sepideh Jodeyri

A poem by Sepideh Jodeyri, translated to English by Fereshteh Vaziri Nasab On the lifeside He had a shapely smell, Cruel shapes And stranger-biting eyes It seemed that he craved for my heart I poured sugar for him on the lifeside He ate and didn’t eat The lifeside is huge and high On the lifeside there are silent hands So many That no one desires. … Continue reading ‘On the lifeside’ by Sepideh Jodeyri

Two poems by Polly Atkin

  Imaging We can’t say for certain how long it had been there before we found it, masked by the hulk of the wardrobe, our own poor perception, its creeping rapidity, the weak radiation of winter light – its circular messages breaching the paper that glossed its scribblings over so many blinkered moons. It lived in our midst, clandestine. We slept together. It breathed in … Continue reading Two poems by Polly Atkin

Two poems by Leonardo Boix

Manger After The Adoration of the Magi This ramshackle hut I was born had neither thatch, roof nor ceiling A hovel with a hundred o holes, having no walls nor windows, not even an exit. Cows, horses, flies slept all within, barely room for a time, Father built chimneys and Mother had sweetbread and kidneys a boiling. Winters were harsh. Hailing, piss-snow over us while … Continue reading Two poems by Leonardo Boix

Two poems by Will Harris

  Eyewitness Travel In Shepherds Bush library, now an annex of Westfield, a man in a corner seat leans over two Dorling Kindersley books —Eyewitness Travel—and with near-complete, near-sighted reverence (the kind you’d give to something rare or precious) turns and scans each glossy page. I’m trying to believe it’s for a trip he’s planning, but the stains on his ripped jumper give me the … Continue reading Two poems by Will Harris

Three poems by Jodie Hollander

  The Metronome She set the metronome ticking, her children the pendulum, rocking back and forth from Mother to Father, Father back to Mother. Then she’d twist the knob to Father-Mother, Mother-Father, or call out Allegro!, and they’d speed up: FatherMother, MotherFather, FatherMother. Her children walked sideways, their eyes shifted horizontally, they looked dizzy, even possessed—missing the cars zooming in front of them, but somehow … Continue reading Three poems by Jodie Hollander

Two poems by Jennifer Lee Tsai

  Breathing after Song Dong Tiananmen Square, New Year’s Eve, sub-zero temperatures; he lies face-down, breathing gently for forty minutes while from a distance, Mao observes a few policemen on night watch and the lamp-posts fitted with video cameras. This is the gate of Heavenly Peace. Soon, a patch of frost thaws, just to freeze over again when he rises. In the morning, by the … Continue reading Two poems by Jennifer Lee Tsai

‘Praise Be to Unexpected Ways’ by Chaucer Cameron

Praise Be to Unexpected Ways after Sepideh Jodeyri I have breasts, which I love, I can speak the word breast, I can write the word breast, I can associate the breast with a robin on a branch. I love birds, I love the way they sing, and how they capture territory in unexpected ways. Praise the breast. I have lips, which I love, I can … Continue reading ‘Praise Be to Unexpected Ways’ by Chaucer Cameron

‘High Society’ by Ian Humphreys

  Inside the camphorwood chest – forgotten treasure: a pair of leather cowboy boots with metal toe caps. How they shone. As loud, proud and polished as the men                         they sparked a trail through. Three decades of dust can’t hide the cracks. A genie-rub conjures up swirls of dry ice, the wink of the glitter ball, and the Night Fever dance floor, a chequerboard                            where … Continue reading ‘High Society’ by Ian Humphreys