#NationalPoetryDay October 1st 2020 poetry and artwork challenge. The theme is “Vision”. Ocular or metaphorical welcome, unpublished/published work welcome. Join Rachael Ikins, Gregory Luce, Kit+CY and myself. DM me on Twitter or send a message via my WordPress site. I will feature all work submitted.

“Invisible Me” A photo series by Rachael Ikins



Rachael comments “I have always been fascinated with eyes and faces in all media of my artwork.”


the giants are here
they mollycoddle me cuddle me feed me a jugful of uncurdled milk
they spoon pureed peaches into my gurgling mouth then sing lullabies to soothe me to sleep
they promise me the world and everything that’s not extinct by the time I’m old enough to know the difference between a rhinoceros and a hippopotamus
then while I dream they go and start a revolution to save the oceans the earth the skies
they leave Argus Panoptes to watch over me
and I am safe
unaware a hundred cataracts haunt his dauntless eyes

-Spangle McQueen

See in the Dark

“When what you write about is what you see,
what do you write about when it’s dark?”
—Charles Wright

Faces of lost loves
and my sons when
they were small,
heat shimmer off
a Texas highway
when I was a boy,
the woman gesturing
to no one on the bus
this morning.
Even with the light off
it’s never completely dark:
I can see the pale green
numbers on a digital clock
and streetlight filtered
by the blinds and
ambient light from
who knows where.

-Gregory Luce

Tantalum Lenses
‘I did nothing wrong’—Dominic Cummings

I crossed the polished marble floor
and found the politician’s optician at home.
His door was always open
for eye tests and fittings.

He looked long and hard into my eyes.
He’d damaged his own eyesight
writing illuminated text
by candle light.

He said there was no need to change my prescription—
exposure to his line of sight
had scratched my tantalum* lenses
with his vision.

*Tantalum is a conflict resource used in mobile phones, DVD players, video game systems and computers.

-Kit + CY

Twenty Twenty Vision
Masked and long division
Nature human fission
The World or us…
-Mivvy Tekchandani

. a vision request .

early while driving.                     omen repeating

sometimes the sun comes lower after the crest

one moment

imagine them marching,           slow & white.

will you name them?

in the wake all things come clear.

slow & white.

later below the peaks i tell him. he said it is

the dark crystal.


A Vision by sonja


. a470 .

sun hit the sea,

i was blinded,

by my own



Shortcomings By sbm


Out of blank space
gouge out shapes
of apples and light,
as instrument digs
a blister into palm

He cannot afford mistakes,
steady handed controls
citrus bite of wives
and mistresses.

Strong stink of oxidized linseed oil,
resins, ground cork, wood flour
and pigment all pressed together
and flattened. In later life
after bull sunned atrocities.

If mistakes made
disguise, or begin again.
A head on challenge.
Black eyes carve the shapes,
Print bold red, yellow and green.
A still life, unstilled creation.

-Paul Brookes

Vrouwkje Tuinman: Seven Poems Translated by Donald Gardner

The High Window

dutch f mpoet crfopped


Vrouwkje Tuinman (b. 1974), poet, novelist and journalist, has published six collections of poetry. Lijfrente was awarded De Grote Poëzieprijs 2020 – the annual prize for the best book of poetry in the Dutch language. Currently (2023) she is preparing an album with English language texts and a music by composer-laureate Martin Fondse.

Tuinman is an influential figure in the middle generation of Dutch poets. Her voice is strong and confident, deeply personal, yet fearless. Lijfrente maintains the reader’s attention, despite the limited, devastating nature of her theme. The elegiac tone is cut with an abrasive edge of humour and social comment. These are poems that stay in the memory. ‘Just a touch and the tears would stream from her lines, but each time Tuinman is a step ahead. And that is undoubtedly because she has an eye, despite her grief, for incongruous situations and small absurd moments. Humour…

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In Collaboration with Mr Paul Brookes of Wombwell Rainbows UK for Ekphrastic Poetry Challenge ~ 2023


APRIL 2023 Day One

Poems Inspired by Artwork by Artists  

Beth Brooke , Aaron Bowker,Oormila Vijayakrishnan Prahlad, and Sara Fatima Mir

AB 1

Determined pillar
goal eyed traveller fearless
destined to succeed

BB 1

Is it the island of Lothair
on which poems wrote Trouvere
on which exists no portecochere
on which all is basalt-ware

just a legend of trees , a pair
found in the olden Khmer
mystery surrounds calm water
beware traveler beware.


Is this bird from the time of Chou
pecking on dough
Or it has flown from Po
planning to fly to Vaud
where perchance it meets Zo
thirsty or not, to be sure
it is the cleverest bird
The black and white crow.

Sara FM -1

Who flew from far away Pohai
a miracle if from Alai
It is color divergent, sweeter
than Hungarian Tokay
envied by the magpie
delicate tender gold casefy

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Poetry: “Older” by Anthony Agbo

Fevers of the Mind


As a child, all she ever wanted was to travel around the world but as she gets older, she realizes that wishes weren't actually horses so she settled for the only place she could go without actually travel- Utopia Everything was perfect there, she was happy and fear was something she conquered over there but after each trip out of Utopia, it becomes sadder and scarier for her because she knows that just Alice in wonderland, she always have to return to the real world. When she was just a child, she expected the world to be perfect just as she imagined it. As she gets older, she doesn't know what she wants me what's she stands for anymore; and this scares her. Embarrassed by her fears, she made defensive scarecrows that scared away the things and people she loved. As she gets older, life sat her down and…

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2 poems from Michael Igoe: “Intermittent” & “Cast in Another Life”

Fevers of the Mind

photo from pixabay


I'm sure the main distraction                                                                                                                           is the fan blades gentle whir.                                                                                                                       They always seem much faster                                                                                                                                                                if you stab your finger through.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               Eventually in empty gray skies,                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      it’s high time we show promise.                                                                                                                  At times we are warmer                                                                                                                other times in wet snow.                                                                                                                                                                         We were eating just a little,                                                                                                                                                                            but now we eat much more.                                                                                                                    The smells of cooked fish                                                                                                                    assaulting me after I wake.                                                                                                              It’s in the pan without a handle,                                                                                                                                assumed by a grip of her finger.                                                                                                              In the house like a cave                                                                                                                                              with a roof full of holes                                                                                                                                          time passes in a lullaby.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 We’re looking to regain                                                                                                                                                a mostly serious magic,                                                                                                                                          in all its sundry brands.    

Cast in Another Life

Things will never be better than the way they are now. We’ll see no better dizzy from the sun, than it’s panoramas. It has its impossible obligations, at high noon shirked and denied…

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Poetry Showcase: Stephen Kingsnorth (March 2023)

Fevers of the Mind

All pieces previously published, though rights remain with the author.

Bio: Stephen Kingsnorth, retired to Wales, UK, from ministry in the Methodist Church due to Parkinson’s Disease, has had pieces published by on-line poetry sites, printed journals and anthologies.

His blog is at https://poetrykingsnorth.wordpress.com/

Lengths for Width

It lies beneath her surface sheen, the real disturbance of disease, dementia spread, synapse collapse, while outwardly she knows the rules - the courtesies to strangers shown, as even dares to hold her hand, mutters sweet nothings to her lobe. He daily comes from swimming baths, stiff exercise for sinew strength, some lengths of pool as butterfly, prior to residence - not home - the space where breast-stroke tackles width, that gap between her mind and his; from highest board, diving for love, through water for the flower God, his Lily, surface tension float. Tomorrow it will seem the same, unless more fumbles…

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Jane Dougherty Writes

Paul Brookes chose the Tautogram for us to explore last week.

I didn’t like this form much, far too exclusive. I think I have quite a rich vocabulary, but this was a struggle. Pick any letter and there will be plenty of nouns, verbs, adverbs and adjectives that begin with it, but, unless you pick ‘t’, virtually no articles, conjunctions, prepositions or pronouns, and phrases need those too. Still, struggle or not, I’ve set myself the challenge of writing one of these for each letter of the alphabet, except the silly ones. Here is ‘s’ to begin with.


Sleep settles,
soft sand sifting,
shifting sea-green, sea-blue, sea-purple swell,
Sleep searches
submerged ship-dreams,
sheet-metaled, silver-plated scavenged stars,
sinking slowly seawards.
Somnus sips
subterranean silence.


Sea serpent stirs
subterranean sous-sols,
stony-eyed, sea-wracked,
sifting shipwrecks,
squirming, squid-infested,
scattering silver-glinting,
sequin-stitched, seraph-fish,
singing storm songs.


Stars stretch,
sea-reflected shimmerings,

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Nigel Kent – Guest Feature

Patricia M Osborne

Patricia’s Pen is delighted to welcome back poet, reviewer and blogger, Nigel Kent. This visit Nigel celebrates his latest collection Benchwarmers published by the wonderful Hedgehog Poetry Press. Without further ado it’s over to Nigel.


Nigel Kent

Thank you, Patricia for allowing me the space to talk about my latest pamphlet, Benchwarmers (Hedgehog Poetry Press, 2023), joint-winner of Hedgehog Poetry Press 2022 Wee Collection Challenge.

I have always been interested in poetry’s capacity to make a difference by enabling readers to make a connection with others. Consequently, many of the poems in my previous collections (Saudade, Unmuted, Psychopathogen) have attempted to share the significant in the lives of ordinary, unexceptional people. Benchwarmers is no different, except this time I have specifically focused on those at the margins of society: life’s outsiders, the disenfranchised, those who ‘lost life’s toss the moment they were…

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Book Review: Demitasse Fiction (One Minute Reads for Busy People) by Roberta Beach Jacobson reviewed by Jerome Berglund

Fevers of the Mind

Tapas Plates:

the Sweet and the Savory in Roberta Beach Jacobson’s “Demitasse Fiction: One-Minute Reads for Busy People”

Alien Buddha Press, 2022, 61 pages, 5.5” x 8.5 ISBN 979-8377304104, $10.99 on Amazon


Reviewed by Jerome Berglund

Possessing a highly original voice and enviable dynamic range spanning the full, impressive gamut of civilization from its most worldly urbane (pride marches, the jet set of society, La La Land) to superbly prosaic and folksy pastoral (encompassing agrarian antics, an unforgettable peacenik chance encountered, life slices from widest assortment of less represented or examined vocations and departments, including custodial, sales, stenography), whatever your personal preference be and tastes steer you, all can find many things to admire and savor in the light, extremely pleasurable, captivating and readable pages of Roberta Beach Jacobson’s debut – one may also discover her prolific writing published elsewhere in over ninety print anthologies! – short fiction…

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Poetry: “That One Time at the Taylor Swift Fever Concert” by Paula Hayes

Fevers of the Mind

That One Time at the Taylor Swift Fever Concert

Fever concerts. You have seen the advertisement. Drenched and bathed in flickering candlelight calling up the ghost of her memory. She was supposed to be the one sitting beside me. Her short hair masking the natural curls. The rosy glow of her pointed chin. A painting, she could have been in another century. 

Fever concerts. Always in a secreted location. Are the tickets to a concert or are you purchasing a meeting with Vito Carleone? You don't know for sure. But you highly suspect for the price that you are on your way to making a deal in the backroom of a spaghetti warehouse.The checkered tablecloth. The basket of bread sticks. The flask of red wine. Or it could be an Olive Garden. Again, you are not sure of much these days. 

Fever concerts. In reality, when you arrive at…

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Poetry Showcase: Linda M. Crate (March 2023)

Fevers of the Mind

photo from pixabay (Pheladii)

someone to hear me

i have been alone in crowded rooms,
faked a smile so well no one knew
the sadness that oozed in my veins;
people say that they'd notice their friends
depression don't understand that depression
isn't always cutting wrists, sobbing, or 
the inability to shower—

sometimes it's burying your feelings down so
as not to be a burden to anyone else,
sometimes it's needing constant reassurance
that you're loved because even if you should know sometimes you just can't; it is being a good swimmer yet still drowning because the emotions are too strong to fight off— with all due respect you don't notice all the little signs, i know because once i thought of how pretty it would be to view the sky from the bottom of a creek after i jumped off a bridge and no one even knew; love your…

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