‘The Tale of Wilbur’s Victorian Sewage Pumps’ by Anita Pati

The Tale of Wilbur’s Victorian Sewage Pumps The two-barrelled Prince Consort engine designed by a colonel named St John, was fantasised fondly in Hitchin. Colonel St John had pondered how sewage, to fuel one onward, like money, should never be squandered. Conceived over parlour-time Horlicks, cream-splashed Imperial promise twirled ostrich eggs, rare hot-house relics. And if he was right in his thesis, Lloyds would fund … Continue reading ‘The Tale of Wilbur’s Victorian Sewage Pumps’ by Anita Pati

‘De-Extinction’ by Suzannah Evans

De-Extinction They re-animated the mammoth using ice-age DNA. Its mother was an elephant surrogate and this was hailed as such success that someone suggested we bring back everything we’ve ever lost and so the dwindling glaciers renewed themselves in the valleys like the puckered skin of scars and the return of archaeopteryx became a worry to livestock farmers worldwide and outside the back door in … Continue reading ‘De-Extinction’ by Suzannah Evans

‘Five Unusual Things’ by Kathy Pimlott

    You open the quarter-lights, get out of the car. ‘Five minutes’ you say ‘and while I’m gone, look for five unusual things’. And I’m alone on a back street of workshops and offices. No-one appears. There are no balloons, no burglaries. Nothing disturbs the street. Two thirds up the warehouse wall the brick course swivels ninety degrees, three fanciful rows and then back … Continue reading ‘Five Unusual Things’ by Kathy Pimlott

‘Mal’ by Anita Pati

Mal Them dogs won’t touch us three. On Pendle Hill, no wind can whip us, no brack of clouds from Chorley pall us. Look. Dogs here are bogbounce happy, kiddies snuffing balls and whatnot near Malkin, families tripping from the corrugated towns. They skirl around me, my own dog Whistler: springer spaniels, border collies, Sunday walkers flush-cheeked fed. Proud marchers in their slimy wellies, clodding … Continue reading ‘Mal’ by Anita Pati