Day 9. My annual National Poetry Month 2021 ekphrastic challenge is a collaboration between artists John Law, Kerfe Roig, Jane Cornwell, and writers Ankh Spice, Jane Dougherty, Redcat, Jayaprakash Satyamurthy, Anne Arbuthnot, Simon Williams, Susan Richardson, Tim Fellows, Anjum Wasim Dar, Tony Walker, Merril D Smith, and me. April 9th

Day 9

KR9_red suit_wombwell

Red Suit
-Kerfe Roig

JL9 Orange Tip

Orange Tip
-John Law


-Jane Cornwell

Inspired by JC9

The Seals

Sleek pelts silvered in moon-spray,
brown eyes see only each other, in this monochrome world
the slivered crescent’s too high, and the twinkling birds
too far away,
though their lullabies soothe
the midnight sea. There are only whispers, the susurration of the wind, the dreams of fish
that arc above the surface,
nocturnal mutterings—no danger tonight,

they touch nose to nose, then swiftly, fin-footed,
in graceful pas de deux, they dance beneath the waves.

-Merril D Smith

At Pariwhero by Tim Fellows

-Ankh Spice


The Aurora Butterfly – A Sonnet

The Aurora male, wingtips like golden dawn
Peek out from the shadowy forest edge
Letting his wings flutter awake and yawn
Hoping he his chances enough has hedged

Is there enough big flower heads nearby
So far devoid of other females eggs
Is the soil deep, rich and suitably dry
Are there any quick hunters with eight legs

Wondering if it’s a warm enough day
If he’s chosen a path with enough light
For a female to at last fly his way
To him the meadow is luminous bright

The male awaits being picked by a queen
Dreams of a female in gold speckled green


Nineteen eighties

-Jayaprakash Satyamurphy


All Our Own

If we lived on an island all our own,
sheltered by rocks that stretch
imposing arms to the stars,
I would swim with you under the moon.
The sky would protect our secrets.

You would move in close,
lips soft against my ear,
“I want you”.
I would tickle you with my whiskers,
eyes coquettish,
mouth filled with desire.

If we lived on an island all our own,
our love could be full volume.
We could breathe under water,
leap up to taste the stars.
Nothing would hurt,
we would never grow old.

(inspired by JC9)
-Susan Richardson

Our of Time

(Inspired by John Law’s 9th Painting – Orange Tip)

Ever abhorred one hue
because of one who
used to wear that color most often?

And yet today I love a Mimic Eggfly,
an orange one, oh so odd,
strange and unrhymed with
the monochrome world around it –

monochrome, because today
the sun orbits in a lopsided manner,
my boss excommunicates me,
and you know what that means,

and yet, here, an orange butterfly
rises as if it is the only way –
to up and settle for a jiffy
and to up again, again.

The breeze is summer.
I am autumn, and
the butterfly comes out of season and time.

-Kushal Poddar

Above the tides

beyond the tears and fearsome expectations
beyond the floods and scratching violins
we hold our heads above the rising tides
at long last some form of peace we conquer
some form of peace we find

Inspired by JC9
-Simon Williams

Making shadows
Inspired by Kerfe Roig’s Red suit and John Law’s Orange tip.

Is it emulation or a display of domination
that moves us to build higher, brighter, faster,
to cover the earth with our death dance?

You watch the fast cars
beneath your high-rise window,
plot your day,

the money to shift
from one bank account to another.
You shift gears, change shift,
shift for yourself
murmuring your mantra
God helps those who help themselves.

Funny how shift rhymes with grift.

Did you ever see those wings open
and close with unconscious beauty
the splash of delicate colour upon the green,
listen to the wind among dry seed heads?

Your heavy feet leave traces in the dew,
and where you tread, nothing grows.
-Jane Dougherty

As a star

You watched me there at the window
Laughing at my dreams, hopes
Of something you couldn’t see
All of it unimaginable in your world
Where nobody thinks they can try
And break from the normal drudge

You weren’t watching on the day
I looked up transfixed at the beauty
Even though death was what I saw
A shooting star burning bright
Dust, burning rock dust shining
In it’s death throes

And I knew then if a stardust can glow
Show the world it’s glow in dying
Mine had to shine by living

-©AilsaCawleyPoetry 2021
Written for
wombwellrainbow ekphrastic poetry April challenge.
Artwork by Jane Cornwell

A Shaman

A hungry caterpillar I eat others
of my kind. Grey seal in night’s distances
we bob between wild waves secret lovers.
I curl into crescent shaped chrysalis,

struggle out of my case, stretch my wings, let them harden in sunlight before flight.
Amongst Garlic Mustard, Lady’s Smock, springs
nectar I sip, for a lady in white.

In day I am land locked. Night’s we play snout
nuzzle, we slip around one another.
My night wife, while day wife sleeps it out.
Discover ourselves before discover.

I live through the lives of others, often
alien to folk, sisters, brothers, kin.

-Paul Brookes

Bios and Links

-John Law

“Am 68. Live in Mexborough. Retired teacher. Artist; musician; poet. Recently included in ‘Viral Verses’ poetry volume. Married. 2 kids; 3 grandkids.”

-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.

Her website is:

-Kerfe Roig

A resident of New York City, Kerfe Roig enjoys transforming words and images into something new.  Her poetry and art have been featured online by Right Hand Pointing, Silver Birch Press, Yellow Chair Review, The song is…, Pure Haiku, Visual Verse, The Light Ekphrastic, Scribe Base, The Zen Space, and The Wild Word, and published in Ella@100, Incandescent Mind, Pea River Journal, Fiction International: Fool, Noctua Review, The Raw Art Review, and several Nature Inspired anthologies. Follow her explorations on her blogs,  (which she does with her friend Nina), and, and see more of her work on her website

-Tim Fellows

 is a poet and writer from Chesterfield whose poetry is heavily influenced by his background in the Derbyshire coalfields – family, mining, politics, and that mix of industry and countryside that so many mining areas had. People can email me at for a copy of the pamphlet or visit for recent poems

-Jayaprakash Satyamurthy

is a writer based in Bangalore, India. His books include the novella Strength Of Water (2019) and the poetry collection Broken Cup (2020). He used to write horror, but now it’s anyone’s guess. 

-Anjum Wasim Dar

Born in Srinagar (Indian Occupied )Kashmir,Migrant Pakistani.Educated at St Anne’s Presentation Convent Rawalpindi. MA in English MA in History ( Ancient Indo-Pak Elective) CPE Cert.of Proficiency in English Cambridge UK. -Dip.TEFL AIOU Open Uni. Islamabad Pakistan.Writing poems articles and stories since 1980.Published Poet.Awarded Poet of Merit Bronze Medal 2000 USA .Worked as Creative Writer Teacher Trainer. Educational Consultant by Profession.Published http://Poet.Author of 3 Adventure Novels (Series) 7 Times Winner NANOWRIMO 2011- 2019.

-Jane Dougherty

writes novels, short stories and lots of poems. Among her publications is her first chapbook of poetry, thicker than water. She is also a regular contributor to Visual Verse and the Ekphrastic Review. You can find her on twitter @MJDougherty33 and on her blog


RedCat’s love for music and dance sings clearly in The Poet’s Symphony (Raw Earth Ink, 2020). Passion for rhythms and rhymes, syllabic feets and metres. All born out of childhood and adolescence spent reading, singing, dancing and acting.

Her writing spans love, life, mythology, environment, depression and surviving trauma.

Originally from the deep woods, this fiery redhead now makes home in Stockholm, Sweden, where you might normally run into her dancing the night away in one of the city’s techno clubs.


-Merril D Smith

is a historian and poet. She lives in southern New Jersey, where she is inspired by her walks along the Delaware River. She’s the author of several books on history, gender, and sexuality. Her poetry has been published in journals and anthologies, including Black Bough Poetry, Nightingale and Sparrow, Anti-Heroin Chic, and Fevers of the Mind.

-Tony Walker

By day Tony climbs the greasy pole of clinical hierarchy. Not yet at the top but high enough to feel the pole sway and have his grip challenged by the envious wind of achievement. Looking down on the pates and gazes of his own history, at times he feels dizzy with lonely pride. By night he takes solace, swapping scalpel for scripts and begins his training and climbing again, in the creative world of writing. His writing is an attempt to unify the twenty-four hours. @surgicalscribe seeks to connect the clinical and creative arts of surgery, science and writing. Hoping to do for medicine and surgery through creative writing what Prof Cox has done for physics with television.

So, he practices his art.

-Ankh Spice

 is a sea-obsessed poet from Aotearoa. His work has been widely published internationally, in print and online, and has twice been nominated for the Pushcart Prize. He’s a co-editor at Ice Floe Press and a poetry contributing editor at Barren Magazine. You’ll find him and a lot of sea photography on Twitter @SeaGoatScreams or on Facebook @AnkhSpiceSeaGoatScreamsPoetry.

-Simon Williams

lives and works in Edinburgh, where running clears his head and creates space for ideas. He publishes short stories and poems on

-Anne Arbuthnot

·  Poet, Writer, Author, Small Press Publisher/Editor, Mentor/Tutor/Coach

Living a rural life, inspired and surrounded by nature, pondering and writing about life’s many puzzles and complexities, a gentle activist.

·  2008 – current Mansfield A&P Show poetry judge

·  2010 Hay Festival Most Beautiful Tweet shortlist

·  2018 Mansfield Haiku on the Footpath competition winner

·  2020 Mansfield Bushy Tales Poetry Award winner “Musing in the time of Covid”

·  2020 Mansfield Bushy Tales Chapbook contributor


·  Twitter @gentleanne

Paul Brookes

Paul is a shop assistant, who lives in a cat house full of teddy bears. His first play was performed at The Gulbenkian Theatre, Hull.  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. Had work broadcast on BBC Radio 3 The Verb and videos of his Self Isolation sonnet sequence featured by Barnsley Museums and Hear My Voice Barnsley. He also does photography commissions and his family history articles have appeared in The Liverpool Family History magazine.

4 thoughts on “Day 9. My annual National Poetry Month 2021 ekphrastic challenge is a collaboration between artists John Law, Kerfe Roig, Jane Cornwell, and writers Ankh Spice, Jane Dougherty, Redcat, Jayaprakash Satyamurthy, Anne Arbuthnot, Simon Williams, Susan Richardson, Tim Fellows, Anjum Wasim Dar, Tony Walker, Merril D Smith, and me. April 9th

  1. Pingback: The Seals: Ekphrastic Challenge, Day 9 – Yesterday and today: Merril's historical musings

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