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, Yvonne Marjot and myself. May 16th

16MF 16

heart of stone

all through the millenia
all egbert wanted was
to play with the other statues

-Rich Follett

Day 16 Sonja

 .pensive.

a quizzical look
grey frowns the brow
wrinkles

did it do wrong
neutered into submission
wandering
lost the way

she said she will trap it send it away
her aggressive with the lockdown

envious of solitude
exploding with anger

red threads could bind us

-sbm

Who Are You

A life of consequences.
The whole thing
a slight of hand…
I cannot see me,
doubt anyone can.

Never to know my name,
or purpose hidden behind.
Mendacity my gift and
I my own victim.
My light is not
the illuminating kind.

A life spent
hide and seeking,
the deeper I look
the darker my lairs.

I nearly met
on one or two occasions,
not yet being
quite there.

©️ Dai Fry 15th May 2020.

*

I recall a dark room at English Heritage, a documentary showing
an eight-to-ten-minute introductory guide to big castle, wherever.
This is, perhaps, a simulated experience, curated with panoramic
cinematography – available in the gift shop for nine-ninety-five.
Every time, I find these dark rooms – showing a documentary,
I sit there for eight-to-ten-minutes, thoroughly enjoying the space,
imagining my life as an informative documentary; a screen wipe.

-Alex Mazey

The Walk

Few find the shrifted forest – a wanderer feels
their gait well weighed by trees and rock
to find how great the need for succour-paths.
If your feet, as heavy as they are, will carry you
for another week, a day, an hour
through the loosened sharps of the vale
some trivial thing will call you to your walking-on.
When the wet green hands of sentinels
wing a creature through this breach
its count of given steps was done and done.
And we could do much worse than to stop it here
we beasts who have been treading
so stilted since first we fell. Far worse than to drop
to our knees on this cushion of needles
beneath an unsuspected kindness of stones.
Sometimes you don’t see how much they love you
until their face is watching you leave.
The last walk done, and I’ll go laughing, all thin-
skin shiver in the warm wet breath of the rock
that has turned these bones, has spun us on
and on, every day since we arrived.
She gave us milk from the dirt
of her body. Every day opened the door
to the walk. You mourn your pets like family.

-Ankh Spice

The Spectre

You see me as a hideous invasive enemy oddity
but I see you as an existential anomaly hoping to remain free but it is not meant to be – Your
insatiable sensational lust for self-gratification
revealed your selfish nature neglecting your
intended function to willingly and selflessly
nurture but you have proven time and time again
your expected failure to prove your worth as a
temporary fleeting organism on a planet only meant
to temporarily tolerate your inherited generations –

Your neglect of each other and your dismissal of
of obvious signs and revelations in your darkest
dreams and ruby screams did not deter you from
darkening your absorbent soul as you hunted for
monetary riches, damning those who you deemed
unnecessary in an existence you craved to have
total dominance in unable to foresee you failed legacy.

This is your final hour as your essence will be ended –
You do not deserve to be awarded this precious
Earthly existence so forget your expected inheritance…

-Don Beukes

Release

Looking at the red sky All I see is you
The ground trembles as I try
To hug the earth like glue
Closing my eyes struggling not to cry
Your angelic face fills my view
As I let go, my body wants to fly
and search for you in the heavenly blue

-Carrie Ann Golden

 #MF 16

The nightmares and dreams of children
are carved of the same stone;
they are massive. Even the friendliest
glower, because of their weight.
All through their lives, these stones
follow all the children who ever were.
As adults, the stones loom, smaller in size,
but heavier, pressing down on hearts
and minds which don’t believe in dreams
or nightmares, but are certain of death.

#16

American bullet, barreling out, like an asteroid
racing to a pre-mediated hit.
It is red hot. It knows its way.
A finger has shot out before it.
It points. Like a diseased god, it chooses.

-Elizabeth Moura

Draw me to the eye
Center us down together
Stillness in your storm

-st

The heart of a tree
is a crack
in time.

A glimpse across galaxies
linked by wormholes
in xylem.

This giant is fallen:
a window on eternity
exposed,

though the roots still live.
Here – delicate in rotten bark –
sapling.

Time
is the crack
in a tree’s heart.

-Yvonne Marjot

The Lion

I am Hunger and look for a prey.
No animal, big or small,
as far as I can see.

I find a big cave,
There must be some animal  here.
If so, come evening it will return
I will hide myself in the cave
and when it returns,
pounce on it and have a good meal.

Sun begins to set,
I hear a voice
“Hello cave,
I am your friend here.”

I do not reply
“Hello cave,
don’t you remember
the arrangement we made?
I have to shout when I arrive
and you will ask me to come in.
Without your green signal
I do not enter the cave.
Since you are silent,
I will go to some other cave.”

Ah, there seems to be an arrangement
between the cave and this animal.
Let me get him into my trap.
I will shout back a welcome
to him and he will walk in happily.”

I roar, “Hi jackal,
come in.
You are welcome.”

Nothing happens.
Nothing happens

My stomach is an empty cave
full of echoes.

-Paul Brookes

Cento 2

You do not deserve to be awarded this precious
earthly existence so forget your expected inheritance…
Stillness in your storm

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.

-Yvonne Marjot

is a lost kiwi, now living on a Scottish island. She has been making up stories and poems for as long as she can remember. Her first volume of poetry, The Knitted Curiosity Cabinet, won the Brit Writers Award for poetry in 2012. She has published four novels and a book of short stories.
Twitter handle:
@alayanabeth

-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.

One thought 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, Yvonne Marjot and myself. May 16th

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