Welcome to a special ekphrastic challenge for May. Artworks from Mary Frances, James Knight and Sue Harpham will be the inspiration for writers, Alex Mazey, Ankh Spice, Samantha Terrell, Dai Fry, Carrie Ann Golden, sonja benskin mesher, Rich Follett, Don Beukes and myself. May 7th.

7MF 7

psychic caterwaul

one dimension away
Hieronymus Bosch’s housecats frolic
beneath a papier-mâché moon
howling and miaowing
in a demonic felid mardis gras

here on earth,
a fair trade toyshop window—
nothing to fear
and yet …

-Rich Follett

Act like you were never for sale

Those were the days in which we felt our flutter
hard and bright as a burning, painted thing, and
those were the days when we painted our feelings
on each others’ faces with pure sugar and unguent-of-anthers, and
those were the days when faces would touch cheeks
intimately, brief and baked electric with proper unsaids, and
those were the days when the electric that moved us
moved us in that little pond of footlights
like a swirl of young eels, so slender, such good teeth, and
those were the days when company meant
we played together well and no-one forgot their lines
or missed a step, or when they did the painted faces
laughed kindly, and not like they had smelled blood in the water
or finally seen the glass, the tags, and some of that last part
is a lie. But a pretty lie, sticky with fertile anthers, and
we bite into it again and again, this cake so sweet
we know it only makes us sick

-Ankh Spice

mouseisdancing sonja day seven

.mouse.

are you dancing there
you tiny creatures and
are you happy with this
music

should I cut it straight and hard
in layers or leave it to grow?

are you dancing there together
to your own tunes and remarkable
tangents

or
will you advise on the steps to take
while moving ahead

most people’s hair looks gentle natural

there is no need for masquerade
or pantomimes
we cannot have the gatherings these days

you know
he cut my hair for years and we became good
friends . visited charleston together the
farm house not the jig
though the style would have suited
the era
so the
mouse

keeps dancing jim

-sonja benskin mesher

                                             *
A shop window like Hunter S. Thompson, at eleven o’clock,
on a week day. A medium to large dose of LSD that I have
never tried. In Mark Fisher’s Ghosts, Burial never went to a
rave in the 90s, which informs, the apparition, the residue
of what’s left. People have a perverse interest in windows,
shop windows, specifically, glass operating as both a means
of access and exclusion. This is the Baudrillardian analysis.
                                              *
Impressed
with the circulation
of the body
my entire outlook
becomes the deconstruction
of the human being
into a clockwork machine.
-Alex Mazey

Little Gods

Artists and scientists are
Little gods who make the
World make sense, make
Things fit together, or do not–
At their discretion.
Chaos and order,
Macro and micro,
Beauty and disgust,
Must meet, hold hands
Like humans used to
Before we were all
Forced off the canvass,
Becoming scattered pieces instead.


-st

Pussy Cat Pussy Cat

Patient quiet shadowed, still.
Not blink, but glide wet eyes.
My whiskers sing electric song
and muscles ripple, as claws
give flex, in deep forever breath.

A present, payment for my board.
Fresh meat for the clumsy,
They that cannot hunt.
While I eat flies and wasps that sting.

Pain is fine its just a thing.
So busy grooming, hunting
and holding my lands.
I sleep where I want
and how I please.
I have no master.

Under sun, on soil
paper or wool,
its all the one to me.

And to those too big
to hunt and kill,
I spread my scent.
This meat is mine.

©️ Dai Fry May 6th 2020.

The Gamdroela

I roam this galaxy alone searching aimlessly
for signs of my origins with only infinity as my
reality but I yearn to touch a dead star maybe
even lick the frozen remains of an ancient comet
long gone – I sometimes hear the echoes of far
flung cosmic explosions and I can feel the empty
of nothing expanding yet I am not swallowed up
into black holes transporting me to other dimensions –

I once felt the touch of a solar flare kindling my
whole being as I absorbed its embracing aura, so
I kept it hugged it caressed it, if just to confirm I
am not really alone – You might look at me most
curiously even curse me with pursed ignorant lips
but allow me to gently kiss you and share my multi-
colored nature with you then maybe you can realise
who I really am but that is not meant to be as I am
not destined to be relevant in this reality – Not
even in your fantasy, so I roam this galaxy alone,

I came from nothing – Forever waiting…

Chorus of the Haters

Playground Show – Quick look have you seen what
she is wearing oh my – Wait, what? Never, no!
Surely not? Aw, hey look at that – You’re kidding me!
Is he really wearing trainers? Oh yeah, I heard his
mom had to sell his shoes so he could have something
to eat this morning, jeeze really now! Sorry what?
Who gave you permission to squeak? Let me go!
He asked for it. Let go of me!

Stranger Danger – Hey, you! Let go of his arm! Uh
who the hell are you? You what? Check this out
guys, I – What the… Ooh look at ow! I told you so!
Let’s get out of here. We’ll get her later, ok? You
gonna have your chance later. Why so gloomy?
I guess I’m okay but what do I say to my mom?
Just tell her the truth. Don’t worry, now hurry!
I cannot always save you. You can let go of my
hand now. Will I see you later? Got something to
say to you…

Backstreets of mind – I wish we could move again
but I felt something today. I hate it here though.
Those bastards never accept me. I need to be free,
To be me…This is not healthy for me. I am slipping
but I have finally connected to someone. A warrior
a friend – A saviour.

-Don Beukes

Petite

abandoned, lives in discarded boxes and bags,
bigger, savage males she seduces so they don’t
injure, don’t bite wounds, break her delicate bones,

washes and cleans herself, anoints herself
brings them live prey, breathing for play.
Lives on cold pizza, crisps, rainwater.

Never lost her lioness head, knows ancestors
bred for mummification, how worship becomes
mass slaughter. Small does not mean less wick.

Chooses who lives with her, whom she dances,
who wraps her fur around, curls up in a lawnmower
grass box, brings live gifts into her house as presents.

=Paul Brookes

Bios and Links

-Alex Mazey

(b.1991) received his MA (distinction) from Keele University in 2017. He later won The Roy Fisher Prize for Poetry with his debut pamphlet, ‘Bread and Salt’ (Flarestack, TBA). He was also the recipient of a Creative Future Writers’ Award in 2019. His poetry has featured regularly in anthologies and literary press magazines, most notably in The London Magazine. His collection of essays, ‘Living in Disneyland’, will be available from Broken Sleep Books in October 2020. Alex spent 2018 as a resident of The People’s Republic of China, where he taught the English Language in a school run by the Ministry of Education. His writing has been described as ‘wry and knowing,’ with ‘an edge that tears rather than cuts or deals blows.’

Twitter: @AlexzanderMazey

Instagram: alexmazey

Here is my interview of Alex:

https://thewombwellrainbow.com/2018/12/18/wombwell-rainbow-interviews-alex-mazey/

-Rich Follett

is a High School English and Creative Writing teacher who has been writing poems and songs for more than forty years. His poems have been featured in numerous online and print journals, including BlazeVox, The Montucky Review, Paraphilia, Leaf Garden Press and the late Felino Soriano’s CounterExample Poetics, for which he was a featured artist. Three volumes of poetry, Responsorials (with Constance Stadler), Silence, Inhabited, and Human &c. are available through NeoPoiesis Press (www.neopoiesispress.com.)

As a singer-songwriter, Rich has released five albums of independent contemporary folk music. His latest. Somewhere in the Stars, is available at http://www.richfollett.com. He lives with his wife Mary Ruth Alred Follett in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, where he also pursues his interests as a professional actor, playwright, and director.

-Ankh Spice

is a sea-obsessed poet from Aotearoa (NZ). His poetry has appeared in a wide range of international publications and has twice been nominated for the Pushcart Prize. He truly believes that words have the power to change the place we’re in, and you’ll find him doing his best to prove it on

Twitter: @SeaGoatScreams
or on Facebook: @AnkhSpiceSeaGoatScreamsPoetry

-Carrie Ann Golden

is a deafblind writer from the mystical Adirondack Mountains now living on a farmstead in northeastern North Dakota. She writes dark fiction and poetry. Her work has been published in places like Piker Press, Edify Fiction, Doll Hospital Journal, The Hungry Chimera, GFT Press, Asylum Ink, and Visual Verse.

-sonja benskin mesher

born , Bournemouth.

now

lives and works in North Wales
as an independent artist

‘i am a multidisciplinary artist, crafting paint, charcoal, words and whatever comes to hand, to explain ideas and issues

words have not come easily. I draw on experience, remember and write. speak of a small life’.

Elected as a member of the Royal Cambrian Academy and the United Artists Society
The work has been in solo exhibitions through Wales and England, and in selected and solo worldwide.
Much of the work is now in both private, and public collections, and has been featured in several television documentaries, radio programmes and magazines.

Here is my interview of sonja benskin mesher:

https://thewombwellrainbow.com/2018/10/16/wombwell-rainbow-interviews-sonja-benskin-mesher/

-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 smashwords.com and its affiliates.Chapbook: Ebola (West Chester University Poetry Center, 2014)

Website: poetrybysamantha.weebly.com
Twitter: @honestypoetry

Here is my 2020 interview of her:

https://thewombwellrainbow.com/2020/04/08/wombwell-rainbow-interviews-samantha-terrell/

-Don Beukes

is a South African and British writer. He is the author of ‘The Salamander Chronicles’ (CTU) and ‘Icarus Rising-Volume 1’ (ABP), an ekphrastic collection. He taught English and Geography in both South Africa and the UK. His poetry has been anthologized in numerous collections and translated into Afrikaans, Persian, French and Albanian. He was nominated by Roxana Nastase, editor of Scarlet Leaf Review for the ‘Best of the Net’ in 2017 as well as the Pushcart Poetry Prize (USA) in 2016. He was published in his first SA Anthology ‘In Pursuit of Poetic Perfection’ in 2018 (Libbo Publishers) and his second ‘Cape Sounds’ in 2019 (Gavin Joachims Publishing). He is also an amateur photographer and his debut Photographic publication appeared in Spirit Fire Review in June 2019. His new book, ‘Sic Transit Gloria Mundi’/Thus Passes the Glory of this World’ is due to be published by Concrete Mist Press.

Here is my interview of Don Beukes:

https://thewombwellrainbow.com/2019/11/02/wombwell-rainbow-interviews-don-beukes/

-Dai Fry

is an old new poet. He worked in social care but now has no day job. A keen photographer and eater of literature and lurid covers. Fascinated by nature, physics, pagans, sea and storm. His poetry seeks to capture image and tell philosophical tales. Published in Black Bough Poetry, Re-Side, The Hellebore Press and the Pangolin Review. He can be seen reading on #InternationalPoetryCircle and regularly appears on #TopTweetTuesday.
Twitter. @thnargg
Web seekingthedarklight.co.uk

Audio/Visual. @IntPoetryCircle #InternationalPoetryCircle Twitter
#TopTweetTuesday

-Elizabeth Moura

lives in a converted factory and works with elders. She has had poetry, flash fiction or photographs published in online and print publications Human/Kind Journal, Rose Quartz Poetry Magazine, Hawk & Whippoorwill, The Cormorant, Radical: A Lit Zine, Chrysanthemum, Occulum, Flash, Paragraph Planet, and Flash Fiction Magazine. On Twitter @mourapoet, Instagram mourathepoet and mourastudio.wordpress.com.

-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 (Cyberwit.net, 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.

-Mary Frances

is an artist and writer based in the UK. She takes a few photos every day, for inspiration and to use in her work. The images for this project were all taken in the last two years on walks during in the month of May. Her words and images have been published by Penteract Press, Metambesen, Ice Floe Press, Burning House Press, Inside the Outside, Luvina Rivista Literaria, and Lone Women in Flashes of Wilderness.
Twitter:
@maryfrancesness

-James Knight

is an experimental poet and digital artist. His books include Void Voices (Hesterglock Press) and Self Portrait by Night (Sampson Low). His visual poems have been published in several places, including the Penteract Press anthology Reflections and Temporary Spaces (Pamenar Press). Chimera, a book of visual poems, is due from Penteract Press in July 2020.

Website: thebirdking.com.

Twitter: @badbadpoet

Here is my interview of James Knight:

https://thewombwellrainbow.com/2019/01/06/wombwell-rainbow-interviews-james-knight/

-Sue Harpham

is an admin worker, currently not in work Married, 2 sons. Loves poetry and words. She considers herself a writer of scribble rather than a poet. She has written a novel and is using her spare time to finally get it published (self-publishing) which has been an ambition of her for the last 10 years.

2 thoughts on “Welcome to a special ekphrastic challenge for May. Artworks from Mary Frances, James Knight and Sue Harpham will be the inspiration for writers, Alex Mazey, Ankh Spice, Samantha Terrell, Dai Fry, Carrie Ann Golden, sonja benskin mesher, Rich Follett, Don Beukes and myself. May 7th.

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