Three poems by Jane Clarke

  Winter Since the trouble with his heart she tries to keep him in but before the breakfast tea is cold, he shrugs on his coat, lifts his cap, blackthorn stick and heads out across the fields to count cattle and sheep check how far the flood has risen, break ice for cows at the pond. There’s not a pick on him; he feels every … Continue reading Three poems by Jane Clarke

‘To the Ghost of Sylvia Plath’ by Nikki Magennis

    Don’t get up so early, my love.  I am not your mother but I will take you by the hand and undo you. Unwet the towel.  Unroll it and leave it hanging by the sink.  Let them all sleep, with their sickle moon eyelids, with their small collections of newly formed thoughts.  Drop your cut-ruby jewellery. Let yourself waken into the pristine cold … Continue reading ‘To the Ghost of Sylvia Plath’ by Nikki Magennis

A poem by Breda Wall Ryan

  The Snow Woman She was a blow-in then, the snow a wordless paper sheet, her footprints the first blunt penstrokes with everything still to write: spring planting, barley sheaves, a bitter crop of stones and chaneys at the turn of the year. Windblown crows dropped in through holes punched in the sky, gossiped year after year. She wrote children, they built the scarecrow in … Continue reading A poem by Breda Wall Ryan

‘Blackbird in Winter’ by Roy Marshall

Blackbird in Winter He’s on a branch above my head velvet feathers at touching distance, yellow ringed eye locked to mine. Is an alarm call frozen in his breast, the urge to fly curtailed by heavy air, or is it to preserve energy and heat that he keeps still? Can he see in me a lack of threat, recognise the need to move slowly through … Continue reading ‘Blackbird in Winter’ by Roy Marshall

A poem by Rebecca Bird

  Progression   I from the bedroom, he sees a brigade of snow V through a streetlamp’s mottled brights, a cheap party moon that hangs in the streamers and calls it winter.  Warm in a marriage bed, blankets clamouring like ancient choirs, he thinks of cinnamon drinks, white-capped cars, IV and not of the boy he saw today in the market. A young lad, pencilled … Continue reading A poem by Rebecca Bird

Two poems by Maurice Devitt

  First Days of Winter Trees blue and leafless, a doily of frost forms on the front lawn, first peelings of ice on pathways, winter coats stiff and reluctant. Words, chipped from frozen thoughts, disappear in a blur of breath, as movements slow and bony fingers burrow into gloves. Shoes, now too big for curled toes, skate on polished tiles and soft, summer bodies totter … Continue reading Two poems by Maurice Devitt

‘The Pale Horse’ by Lesley Ingram

    At twilight she is still sitting with the book in her hand, staring through the window, looking for snow. Have you seen my horse? she says, eyes wild with loss.  I smile, brush her hair.  She purrs. She cups my face.  I know you, she whispers, have you stolen my horse?  I cover her hands with mine and we stare a while, nose … Continue reading ‘The Pale Horse’ by Lesley Ingram