My annual National Poetry Month ekphrastic challenge has become a collaboration between Jane Cornwell (artist), and poets Susan Richardson, Samantha, Jay Gandhi, John Wolf, Ali Jones and myself. April 1st.


Treasure Hunters

“Arise, cry out in the night…Lift your hands toward Him for the life of your young children, who faint from hunger at the head of every street.” – Lamentations 2:19

Oppressor and oppressed,
Hunter and hunted,
May appear unalike. Indeed, they are.
But surface appearances
Are harder to distinguish
In dark of night,
When vibrant colors of
Royalty and wealth
Fade into commoners’ blues and greys,
Leveling the rich and poor, adult and child,
The sick and the well.
And all are finally forced to admit
The only treasure worth seeking
Is the future.



After dark, your real self rises,
slips on midnight’s cloak.
This self can do everything
the daytime you is afraid of.

One night, full moon
riding a galleon sky,
maps a star path,
to show another you.

You mount a milk white charger,
gallop out across galaxies,
plunge and land, hoof-sure
on cool waiting sand.

There another you waits,
crouched and secretive,
mining something small
and furtive,a treasure, hidden.

You turn to face yourself,
here is courage, you had it all along,
there beyond far flung light, you stand –
reassembled, like grains of sand.

-Ali Jones

Tattooing the Sky

She rides into the falling darkness,
tattooing the sky with her fierce voice,
spreading a song of courage
that grows out of her bones,
takes root in the cadence of her heart.
She is a mother cradling you
in the warmth of the moon,
a sister who holds your hand
until you no longer feel afraid,
a friend who makes you laugh
with your whole body.
She belongs to the stars,
carries the fire of them in her belly.
When fear is a rampage that travels
in the hands of a virus over the earth,
she is the music that unites us,
the poetry that reminds us we are brave.

-Susan Richardson

Horse race


Gallop, my friend, gallop.
Those stars are waiting;
they beam & invite to a world
where light is currency. The
heaven is around the corner.
Jump over the stone walls,
trek through the rocky Alps.
Gallop, my friend, gallop.
Don’t stop to assist anyone.
No free rides, no empathy.
Water break is a luxury and
rest is a waste of time.
Gallop, my friend, gallop.
Every wound is a tattoo;
it shall re-iterate your tale
of pride and valour.
Yes, we will eat but only
after crossing the rivers &
swimming the oceans.
Trust me, you will not die.
You won’t die of exertion
& even if you do, you will
be a martyr; not a coward.
Gallop, my friend, gallop.

-Jay Gandhi

In A Grain Of Sand

flowerless worlds warm
under her sandals.
Some snick between
her toes rasp

her soft skin with their roll,
as they orbit her ridges


the world’s she sees suddenly
two galaxies,
one white, one black.
Nestle in a bowl of planets

and then a snort

behind makes her turn
a rearing white mare
and its angry rider
shouts at her

stop disturbing worlds
with your feet, put down
The two galaxies.

And suddenly a flower is heaven.

She walks in a desert
where every grain of sand
is a world,
Her worlds are a desert.

Her turning worlds make
the horses ground so unsafe
the rider is thrown.

Her planets fill his mouth
and he drowns.

-Paul Brookes

The Prophetess

Ahmar Moonblood Nebulosah,
For intelligence and endurance famed ;
down twenty generations,
Haughty but unwise.

Rears at sight of Sidewinder’s horns,
Its diamond back
promises pain ;
Painfully enflamed lameness ;
and then desertion.

The Governess
Part jailer, part teacher
Traditional disciplinarian.
She who withdraws priveleges
like an Indian giver.

The Prophetess
Discovered, kneels
Head, a billion blanketed stars
Supplicant hands, ingrained.

-John Wolf

Bios and links

-Jane Cornwell

likes drawing and painting children, animals, landscapes and food. She specialises in watercolour, mixed media, coloured pencil, lino cut and print, textile design. Jane can help you out with adobe indesign for your layout needs, photoshop and adobe illustrator. She graduated with a ba(hons) design from Glasgow School of art, age 20.

She has exhibited with the rsw at the national gallery of scotland, SSA, Knock Castle Gallery, Glasgow Group, Paisley Art Institute, MacMillan Exhibition at Bonhams, Edinburgh, The House For An Art Lover, Pittenweem Arts Festival, Compass Gallery, The Revive Show, East Linton Art Exhibition and Strathkelvin Annual Art Exhibition.

-Susan Richardson

is an award winning, internationally published poet. She is the author of “Things My Mother Left Behind”, coming from Potter’s Grove Press in 2020, and also writes the blog, “Stories from the Edge of Blindness”. You can find her on Twitter @floweringink, listen to her on YouTube, and read more of her work on her website.

Here is my updated 2018 interview of her:

-Ali Jones

is a teacher, and writer with work published in a variety of places, from Poetry Ireland Review, Proletarian Poetry and The Interpreter’s House, to The Green Parent Magazine and The Guardian. She has a particular interest in the role of nature in literature, and is a champion of contemporary poetry in the secondary school classroom.

Here is my 2019 interview of her:

-Jay Gandhi

is a Software Engineer by qualification, an accountant by profession, a budding Guitarist & a Yoga Sadhak at heart and a poet by his soul. Poetry intrigues him because it’s an art in which a simple yet profound skill of placing words next to each other can create something so touching and literally sweep him of the floor. He is 32-year-old Indian and stays in Mumbai. His works have appeared in the following places:
An ebook named “Pav-bhaji @ Achija” available in the Kindle format at The poem “Salsa; a self discovery” published in an anthology motivated by Late Sir APJ Abdul Kalam. The poem “High Caloried love” selected for an upcoming book “Once upon a meal” The poem “Strawberry Lip Balm” selected in the anthology “Talking to the poets” Four poems published in a bilingual anthology “Persian Sugar in English Tea” Vol.1 Two poems published in the anthology “Poets on the Run” compiled by RC James.

His poems have made it to the PoeTree blog and front pages of & In free time, he likes to walk for long distances.

Here is my 2018 interview with him:

-Samantha Terrell

is an American poet whose work emphasizes emotional integrity and social justice. She is the author of several eBooks including, Learning from Pompeii, Coffee for Neanderthals, Disgracing Lady Justice and others, available on and its affiliates.Chapbook: Ebola (West Chester University Poetry Center, 2014)

Twitter: @honestypoetry

Here is my 2020 interview of her:

-Paul Brookes

is a shop asst. Lives in a cat house full of teddy bears. His chapbooks include The Fabulous Invention Of Barnsley, (Dearne Community Arts, 1993). The Headpoke and Firewedding (Alien Buddha Press, 2017), A World Where and She Needs That Edge (Nixes Mate Press, 2017, 2018) The Spermbot Blues (OpPRESS, 2017), Port Of Souls (Alien Buddha Press, 2018), Please Take Change (, 2018), Stubborn Sod, with Marcel Herms (artist) (Alien Buddha Press, 2019), As Folk Over Yonder ( Afterworld Books, 2019). Forthcoming Khoshhali with Hiva Moazed (artist), Our Ghost’s Holiday (Final book of threesome “A Pagan’s Year”) . He is a contributing writer of Literati Magazine and Editor of Wombwell Rainbow Interviews.

YouTube; Poetry Is A Bag For Life

Twitter: @PaulDragonwolf1


Facebook: Paul Brookes – Writer and Photographer


3 thoughts on “My annual National Poetry Month ekphrastic challenge has become a collaboration between Jane Cornwell (artist), and poets Susan Richardson, Samantha, Jay Gandhi, John Wolf, Ali Jones and myself. April 1st.

  1. Reblogged this on Stories From the Edge of Blindness and commented:
    I am thrilled to be part of Paul Brookes’ Annual Poetry Month Ekphrastic Challenge. It is exciting and humbling to be inspired by and in the company of the exceptional writing of Paul Brookes, Samantha, Jay Gandhi, and Ali Jones, and the beautiful art of Jane Cornwell, every day this month. I hope you will join me for this wonderful ride!

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