My annual National Poetry Month ekphrastic challenge has become a collaboration between Jane Cornwell (artist), and poets Susan Richardson, Samantha, Jay Gandhi, Ali Jones and myself. April 18th. Now with audio!


Shape Shifters

Carve wind, carve rain,
Come storm, begin again.
Come winter, come spring,
Come goddess from within.
Come fire in the head,
Come worshipping the dead.
Come footprint and beast,
Come battle and feast.
Come blood and ride,
Come pipe call and red tide.
Come quiet, come calm,
Come atmosphere to disarm.
Come spirit and ghost,
Come frightening the most.
Come secret and be
Come to all that I see.
Come mountain and mother,
Come stand like no other.

-Ali Jones

The Blue Hawk

Stream and hill follow my contours.
This beak is a high jut of rock.
I command the veer of rivers.

My black wing tips
are the storm’s edges.
My gyre makes the gust.
My white feathers, clouds.

Rain is the pelt of water
off my pinions and claws.
One of my eyes is the sun.
The other eye is the moon.

Gravity is my fall.
Death, my talons.
Sharp edge of ice,
my beak makes orphans.

The unwary, unwatchful,
unaware and weak
are morsels for my young
that turn in the world of my eye.


I pass

the dead

to my wife



Two rocks


by red sinew.

-Paul Brookes

We Are the Badlands

An absence of foliage
In vast canyons
Gives way to something more,
The opportunity to evoke
Emotion from its expanse.
Variegated cutaways of
Ancient earth
Rise and fall
The same way my body
Shudders at your embrace.
What great equalizer
Cuts through earth and
Our bodies, but Time?
And we are all, merely,
Nature laid bare,
Shrouded only
By the eyes of God.


Little things

All that tectonic plates
do is vibrate a little
and crush a civilisation.

All the notions that we
rule every corner of earth,
bury inside the fissures
caused by the earthquake.

Geologists get down
to the business and confirm
that the soul is the epicentre.

-Jay Gandhi

The Sound of Falling

Lost in the tangle of twilight’s thread,
she tucks into the edges
of a rock face,
finds the music of solitude,
blooms into a single note that reaches
into the core of the earth.
The roots of her sorrow
plunge deeply
into the heart of the mountain,
where darkness bleeds like ink
from her veins.
She inhales deeply,
tastes the shadowy tones of silence,
gets heady with longing.
Somewhere in the distance,
a friend calls her name,
His voice fades like a ghost into the granite.
She exhales and falls gracefully
into a melody only she and the rocks can hear.

=Susan Richardson

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


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