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, Elizabeth Moura and myself. May 9th

9MF 9


There’s an office, twelfth floor, in Shenzhen, I have stared,
many times, I think, looked as far as the South China Sea.
These are not the branches of a cathaya forest, three conifers,
from this window. I cannot order a happy lemon in the mall,
cannot recite Matthew 4:9 in the people’s square in Chengdu.
Some days, I read Leo Tolstoy at the back of the public library,
III times translated, first to English, then to Russian, and so on.


Two eyes appear
from a bug
detecting misanthropy

forming the same
colours as the
Khmer Rouge.

-Alex Macey

Mobius musing

those who inhabit cubicles
and those who dwell among trees
have little in common
but there can be no doubt
each is necessary
to reflect upon the other

-Rich Follett

Pantoum for an isolated princess

In her glass coffin, what had flowed in the bone set sail alone
Beyond the bright vault the tree-crowds nodded
And meshed their long toes around the bubble
That carried the fallen log on down the stream

Beyond the bright vault the tree-crowds nodded
The wind stirring branches and passing the message
That carried the fallen log on down the stream
From synapse to synapse until every leaf knew her

The wind stirring branches and passing the message
Threw leaves on the glass to crew up the ship
And synapse to synapse, every leaf knew her
So the sky caught her name, turned her glass to a star

And the leaves on the glass who had crewed up the ship
Of her glass coffin, where what flowed in the bone had set sail alone
Saw the sky catch her name, saw her glass as a star
And fell to the earth to drift deep in the wound

-Ankh Spice


Under glass I stretch,
out life, not to
smell tree sap or leaf.
Or breezing wind.
Catch rain that drops
on tipped toe tongues.

No horizons
lead crystal walls.
And beyond,
tangled imaginations,
a hunger of beasts.

I see my knees and
look in vain,
for the grazing
of a life not lived.

Under glass, dry tears,
await night’s shadow
to take the trees away.
Now danger only song in
this apocalyptic dark.

Hunters eyes dwell
beyond the confines,
of my glass walls.
I read and watch,
food bottled and tinned.

I gather up fear,
a glowing landscape
into which
I can never venture.

Soft song, sang a requiem.
Last of my line.

-© Dai Fry 8th May 2020.

Objects of Reflection

Reflections in windows in our hearts
Bring us closer to the pain of
Mirror images in those panes
Until, noses pushed against glass,

Seeking so hard to see,
With the steam and the strain,
We lose the imagery
Altogether, viewing

Only what’s inside.
Of course, it’s not what we were looking for.
We’re forced
To turn around, and find

The truth
Was always
In the object,
Not its likeness.


Hum of the Drones

Society now an alternative reality

long adapted to forced acceptance of

a new dimension a stoic domination

of a higher order with murderous

intentions controlling a lockdown human

nation – An evolved consciousness

advanced through carefully engineered

experiments so with the arrival of these

deadly drones spying listening all-seeing

recalculating scheming deleting controlling

a fading tired humanity.

It happened gradually, unseen unheard

Their walls came down surrounding

Major cities concealing a doomsday

Countdown with the intoxicating deadly

Hum of the Drones…

-Don Beukes

Day 9, sonja

parakeets in the park, wild now
holds up his hands and they fly
to take seed

clearly reflected while we stop
while we take coffee
while we breathe


of the things we have seen

it came with fire with ferocity
depth that left me floating
isolation from the other
scheme of things. it was
very very red

he said it was his favourite colour
I have never seen him wear it

-sonja benskin mesher


are single eyed.
We move the back projection,
make clear the eyes corners.
What lies ahead, what lies in wait?

Enter house with hollow eyes
Inside its eyes fragrant as bad breath,
a dead leaf
delicate structure
crinkly soft, and wet
wallpaper peals like unheard bells.

Doors are mouths,
mothers polish,
lovers hump over,
by which decisions enter or leave,
from which dead leaves are brushed aside.

-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:


-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.


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:


-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:


-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:


-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

-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.

-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:


-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, Elizabeth Moura and myself. May 9th

  1. Pingback: Untitled #Haiku #Poetry #Writing – A writer & her adolescent muse

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