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 18th.

18Version 2

Sue Day 4

The past of those passed
collected on felled trees,
on stones that mattered.
We have written out our lives,
thrown a few words
against the social wind;
maybe a few have clung
to the dying willows.
I doubt it. We’re transients
on this earth. We don’t know
how to live with this earth.
A silent species, a thousand
thousand years from now,
will have nothing from us
to touch with the wonder
only the fingers can translate.

-Elizabeth Moura

Day 18 sonja

,power and glory.

do you feel like two people
that one is split in two
that the other one does
look a bit like you
only more so

do you fetch out your older clothes and boots
now and make longer sentences that do not quite match the others

feel happy now as the chap you are

will you go back when your hair was commanded
where the bidding predicted

the power house reflected
elected
james?

will this all be for nothing
if you make no changes

live in glass houses
and throw stones

about

james

-sbm

Cycles

Ancient Syrian
Glass beads were made
From sea-turned sand –
Displaced granules
Plus, scalding heat
Created the change.
Solid became liquid,
Became solid once more.

The babies have been bombed
There, you know,
While the Western world
Is willingly blind
(Probably from the glare
Of glass-faced skyscrapers).
But glass and water and time
Have seen it all.

-st

augury

close your eyes … TIGHTLY.

lightning flashes dance and swirl,
neon colors pulsing:
in childhood, an escape—
in adulthood, a nightmare.

we stare into the vortex
behind our eyes
searching for meaning but
meaning eludes us
(it’s a metaphor).

if there is a message—
a lesson is to be learned or
a moral to light our path—
perhaps it is merely
the comfort of knowing that
this chaos, however frightening,
is inherently ours:
we may return to it in the blink of an eye
(or at least in one tight squeeze)
and it will be as we left it.

however senseless it may seem,
it is and always will be a vision beyond vision—
perhaps the only glimpse we get, as mortals,
of life without the burden of flesh.

-Rich Follett

*

Once led to believe, one time, the second tallest building in Xiamen,
now a pizza hut, sells unlimited juice and coffee for twenty renminbi.
American style pancakes are stacked pancakes with bacon and syrup.
Every world has reflections, every building – fire exits, that should
be observed without question. Guilty pleasures are the backlit, exit-
signs of cinema screens, the warm glow of a stone fire, out back with
a buried chicken, and fire eggs, and perfect, red grapes beside the river.

*

Versions of your doppelgängers,
lead to these smooth horizons –
vaporwave swimming pools, etc.

Once added a tomato to my rice
cooker, and mixed it in to form
tomato rice.

Exquisite, modern living.

-Alex Mazey

Versions of Us

Floating whispers fade into toxic ash
raining daily to nourish our forgotten
failures in secret mental corners
morphing into fierce creatures spitting
jealous speeches to proclaim our fake
emotional seizures for false larks to
vaguely maybe see us but we mask
our deepest darkest thoughts igniting
silent wars whilst flashing dagger smiles
of sometimes unknown causes shutting
personal borders as we daily drown in
echoes of screeching sounds and clone
flawed weak versions of us before
turning into choking dust…

Urban Citadel

Confined confused voices
rising up from unplanned urban
hell holes confined spaces breeding
nasty haters looking down on determined
individuals escaping their limitations
igniting explosive emotions spilling
over all corners infecting nourishing
willing recipients in a network of
tensions electrifies dormant
confrontations releasing hidden forces
casting long-lasting shadows over concrete
dead meadows of fallen souls unable to
deal with what life has confronted them
with in mundane lives caused by paper
cloud dreams melting into their personal
urban citadel hell with no-one left to tell.

-Don Beukes

Electron Dreamer

I am the neon burner,
golem walker, dream stalker
on night-ma-red roads.

Behind, pavements
lie murking shadows
in trenches to the side.

Silent drifting, these
sleeping cities dreaming
they still wake.

Deep ocean hunter
under my own light.
Cold fire will call,
from high lines
to dream tides,
washed in the
flotsam and jetsam
of your night.

Outside our dreams piped
to the periphery of life.
See us reborn into
sleep’s despair,
as lizard brains must
warm on moonlit rocks.

©️ Dai Fry 17th May 2020.

This Magic Theatre

Entrance Not for Everyone, For Madmen Only.
There were too many of me
to make sense.

Hawkwind’s Steppenwolf led me to Hermann Hesse
in an effort to find myself. A season in hell

I am the wolf who wishes to feast on all flesh.
I am the man who asks to be reasonable.
The wolf would eat the man raw.
The man who would be sensible.

I am the dragon in both
the man and the wolf.
I am too many.

Kes, the book not the film
ends in a cinema. As I read
I am Billy. Big Billy. Billy
on the screen, Billy sat
in the cinema watching Billy
on the screen. I am Paul
watching Billy sat in the
cinema watching Billy.

I sit with my late grandad
musky with pipesmoke
in the cinema.

I am watching 2001:
A Space Odyssey. I am
Paul watching Dave
in a spacesuit watching
Old Dave in bed.
I am Dave.

I am the dragon who watches Paul
watching Billy and Dave.
I am dragonwolf, I am wolfdragon.
I am BillyDave, I am DaveBilly.

I am adolescent.

Grandad prefers Bond films.

-Paul Brookes

Cento 4

I am the neon burner,
golem walker, dream stalker
on night-ma-red roads,
glass and water and time,

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, Elizabeth Moura and myself. May 18th.

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