My annual National Poetry Month ekphrastic challenge has become a collaboration between Jane Cornwell (artist), and poets Susan Richardson, Samantha, Jay Gandhi, Ali Jones, Dai Fry and myself. April 27th

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Trusting the Musician

Sometimes I wish I were
More than a solitary note
Played intermittently
By whatever musician or animal
Happens by.

Wouldn’t it be nice
To be able to hear the
Whole melodic symphony
Of nature, ourselves included.
But thus, I tempt eternity.

This must be faith,
To know there is
More than we can know,
To trust the music we collectively make
Will continue to grow.


Play it Again

There’s a busker on the corner
Of the main shopping street,
Saxophone held shining forth,
Empty case at her feet.

She plays each day, whatever weather
It’s voice is old deep south,
So animated, living the music,
With the reed held to her mouth.

I do not know her name, or where,
She goes home to every day,
But the sun’s glint on the saxophone,
And her skills always make me stay.

-Ali Jones

🎵 Frank Says 🎵

Jazz, it’s fly/so high.
Languid slow, cool blow.
Hep cats
familiar faces,
guitar phrases,
smoked out places.

Discordance melds,
rhythm flows,
drums staccato,
receptive souls,
cool cats say go-go.

Grab the heat.
Buddy beat
in hot jazz suite.
Up hard, so
tight against it.

Bruise that tune
till tender sweet.
Notes stack up, as
sharps sit flat.

Booze fuelled
schmoozers grind
dig the groove…
It’s smokin’.

Hear them lick
their blue note way
Stanley fingers, hazy
zingers… bass blurs.

Fights for heat
in solo space.
Imbibing tattered applause.

Inside you
sound builds
thumps your chest,
bass hard.
So go figure, as
piano tonk Chick
hits those keys.

You gotta move.

Trumpet picks its
Miles high
sharp notes
wet spray.
droplets spark,
a spotlight’s path.

Jazzing tales
heads burn,
float neural highways,
horizon’s byways.
Time to split?

No this cat stays.

– ©️ Dai Fry revised 24th April 2020.

A Caged Bride

A caged white cold Bride
night bright Barnsley
writes on windows and walls.
Her peace graffitied
under an ebony moon
down narrow
Dow passage.

A saxophone practices
a hint of hashish
three lit blood torches in your eyes.

-Paul Brookes


The movie business has shut down,
aspiring starlets and boys
with chiseled chins
are holed up in box car apartments,
faces pressed against the glass,
wondering when it will be safe
to breathe again.

The streets of Hollywood,
usually filled with dreamers,
wide eyed and desperate to be seen,
have dropped into death watch quiet.
The sidewalks are patrolled
by men in towels,
armed with sticks and plastic cups,
losing their minds
under the rolling eye of the virus
and an unexpected heatwave.

I walk the dogs,
but never leave my block,
smile at the rare person
who passes
on the other side of the street,
now a million miles away,
forget they can’t see beneath my mask.

Just across the road,
a saxophone player practices
on a rooftop deck,
her smooth and mournful notes
a soundtrack to this new life,
a connection through
the social distance.

-Susan Richardson

The lady on the Saxophone

Before getting onto the stage
she rubs her palms with vigour
and places them onto her eyes—
there is energy.

After playing her last tune,
she joins her palms, does
a Namaste and hums the
Urdu prayer in her mind.

Driving back home, she
contemplates over the
mistakes she made today.

Yellow Submarine is the
first song in her playlist.

-Jay Gandhi

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:


is an x social worker and a present poet. Image is all but flow is good too. So many interesting things… Published in Black bough Poetry, Re-Side, The Hellebore, The Pangolin Review. He will not stop.

Twitter                  @thnargg


Audio/Visual.       @IntPoetryCircle #InternationalPoetryCircle Twitter

-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.

One thought on “My annual National Poetry Month ekphrastic challenge has become a collaboration between Jane Cornwell (artist), and poets Susan Richardson, Samantha, Jay Gandhi, Ali Jones, Dai Fry and myself. April 27th

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