Day 12. My annual National Poetry Month 2022 ekphrastic challenge is a collaboration between artists Gaynor Kane, John Phandal Law, Anjum Wasim Dar, and writers, Ailsa Cawley, Tim Fellows, Math Jones, Merril D. Smith, Jamie Woods, Lesley James, Lesley Curwen, Carrie Ann Golden, Peter A., Barbara Leonhard, Jane Dougherty, Eloise Birnam-Wood, Jen Feroze, Vicky Allen, Simon Williams,, Jona Roy, Beth Brooke, Caroline Johnstone, Lynne Jensen Lampe and myself. April 12th.

Day Twelve

GK12 Enniskillen Castle - County Fermanagh

-Gaynor Kane – Enniskillen Castle – County Fermanagh

AWD12 Galaxy

-Anjum Wasim Dar – Galaxy


-John Phandal Law


close eyes
to sun-bright
twitching skin
heat, light

heat, light
bewitch, enlarge
my being

my being
receives this
as food, drink
after winter’s knives

winter’s knives
blunted by
eyes closed
revealing galaxies

of crimson pulses
amber spirals
white hot blaze

eyes closed
I see galaxies
and sink
into bewitching light

-Vicky Allen

when we die by barbara leonhard

(inspired by all three images)

Striving since the beginning,
since fire, watching the flames leap into the night,
sparks among the stars,

since we built from holes in the ground,
created majesty, a sense of importance,
higher and higher,

and even the stories of hubris, chaos,
Babel, the casting down into the ocean,

have never stopped our urge
to point a finger at the sky
and say, There go I.

Fly, soar, claim, conquer,
and in the end
(if this truly is the end),

all we hold in our fist,
is a handful of feathers
from the Firebird’s tail.

-Jane Dougherty


-Tim Fellows

12 AWD
More humanitarian corridors
Fewer humanitarians.
Display. Splay
Locate. Dislocate
Evolve. Revolve.
The scent of eucalyptus and mint.
Urinous sage as it burns.
What kind of exploding galaxy creates this?
What rough beast etcetera etcetera?

-Lesley James

12 [Galaxy AWD12]

I had to take a piece out
To show you the hole,
The whole, sorry,
That there need’s to be a piece missing.

-Math Jones


You told me that I was above myself
With friends who had dreams
Of things you didn’t understand
And nor should I

Things were shrunken into the uniform
Sludge brown of your world
Every time a green shoot showed
You’d STAMP on it until crushed
Broken you’d say

So intent were you on the world around you
That you didn’t manage
To break my imagination and
I hid it down so deep until I left
When I unleashed and unlocked
The galaxy I’d kept hidden from you.

-Ailsa Cawley 2022 inspired by Anjum Wasim Dar – Galaxy


Sand has invaded the far
space of the gun
emplacement. Nothing inside
but its rough
touch and a necklace
of over wintering flies.
Even when it was manned
it must have felt
like holiday time for tommies
deep skies
blue sea and a lighthouse
with its lamp

-Lesley Curwen

A Warning

(after Untitled, JPL12)
heavenly lighthouse
hooped in contrast
omniscient and divine
like a god
so easily mistaken
for sanctuary and protection
standing spinning warnings
while waves and high winds
crash and destroy at will

– Jamie Woods


If walls could speak
History wouldn’t need
To repeat itself

-Carrie Ann Golden

High Noon and Not a Cloud in the Sky (AWD12)

Rubber bands and RIT dye
transform an old yellow pillowcase
into red sky, blazing circles, and white
scar of sun. She could stuff it
with foam and throw it on her bed
or stuff it with snacks and run
away, like in books. She packs
flashlight, pen, new notebook.
Water bottle. Bandaids. The Wolves
of Willoughby Chase. A baloney sandwich.
Her mama’s peanut butter cookies
and the fork for criss-crosses. Her
daddy’s hanky, the one with the little
letter on it. A picture of her parents,
so she won’t forget. Hoists it all
over her shoulder and heads out
to orbit a different star.

—Lynne Jensen Lampe


-Peter A

Vivid colours

Life 1

Live life small,
shrink into grey spaces
where long lists of fears
bite your ankle.

Wait for death,
for decorum to become unfashionable,
for your sense of entitlement
to dwell in life’s misery
drive you to despair.

Life 2

Life is a galaxy
a whirl of diastole and systole
dark holes and vivid colours –
rainbows, gold pot endings.

Create delight in the moment,
whatever your heart sings to you.
Dance in the magnificence
of your curiosity.

Bios And Links

-John Phandal Law

is 68. Lives in Mexborough. Retired teacher. Artist; musician; poet. Recently included in ‘Viral Verses‘ poetry volume. Married. 2 kids; 3 grandkids

-Gaynor Kane

Gaynor Kane lives in Belfast, Northern Ireland, where she is a part-time creative, involved in the local arts scene. She writes poetry and is an amateur artist and photographer. In all her creative activities she is looking to capture moments that might otherwise be missed. Discover more at

Twitter @gaynorkane

Facebook @gaynorkanepoet

Instagram @gaynorkanepoet

-Anjum Wasim Dar

started drawing at St Anne’s Presentation Convent High School, Rawalpindi.
Drawing was taught as a Core subject from  Kindergarten.
Anjum learnt the  skill of  Still Life, Sketching,  Landscape Drawing, Coloring  and Shading  She recalled the scented wax crayons and black  paper sketch books vividly.

Subject of Fine Arts at Intermediate level at Govt.College for Women Rawalpindi,   was stopped by the Indo Pak War of 1965. Anjum continued her passion for art privately.
Her job as a Teacher Instructor allowed her to pursue Art work designing and preparing  Thematic Bulletin Boards and Low cost teaching Aids with the Fauji Foundation Teacher’s Training Institute Rawalpindi.
This won her the National Education Award 1998.

Completing  a Course in Graphic Designing  at NICON Academy Rawalpindi , Anjum began working as a Digital Artist, On Line, registered her Own Firm CER Creative Education Resources 2004 and is a Member of DRN Drawing Research Network UK  and
With her artistic skills she plans and conducts “Environment Awareness Workshops for Children” and is a member of and
CER Participated in World Environment Day and Earth Day Programs 2011-2013
“Face of Climate Change”
Anjum  loves Nature, landscapes and abstract imagery. Works with pencils, crayons and  the Software ArtRage 2.0  and MyPaint.

Anjum Wasim Dar’s Art Portfolio  can be accessed  here:

-Merril D. Smith

lives in southern New Jersey near the Delaware River. Her poetry has been published in several poetry journals and anthologies, including Black Bough Poetry, Anti-Heroin Chic,  Fevers of the Mind, and Nightingale and Sparrow. Her first full-length poetry collection, River Ghosts, is forthcoming from Nightingale & Sparrow Press.  Twitter: @merril_mds  Instagram: mdsmithnj  Website/blog:

-Lesley James(she/her)

is a teacher and writer. She was shortlisted for Love Reading UK’s 2022 Very Short Story Award. Featured flash can be found in The Broken Spine, FullHouseLitMag and RoiFaineant. Kathryn O’Driscoll selected her poem Empty for Full House’s 2021 mental health live reading and forthcoming podcast. Brian Moses, The Dirigible Balloon and Parakeet Magazine have published some of her writing for children.

-Lynne Jensen Lampe

has poems in or forthcoming from Figure 1, Olney Magazine, Yemassee, Moist Poetry Journal, and elsewhere. Also to come is her chapbook Talk Smack to a Hurricane (Ice Floe Press, 2022) about mothers, daughters, and mental illness. She was a 2020 Red Wheelbarrow Poetry Prize finalist. Born in Newfoundland and raised in the Deep South, she lives in mid-Missouri where she edits academic books and journals. Visit her at Twitter: @LJensenLampe.

-Math Jones

is London-born, but is now based in Oxford. He has two books published: Sabrina Bridge, a poetry collection, from Black Pear Press (2017), and The Knotsman, a collection of verse, rhyme, prose and poetic monologue, which tell of the life and times of a C17th cunning-man. Much of his verse comes out of mythology and folklore: encounters with the uncanny and unseen. Also, as words written for Pagan ritual or as praise poems for a multitude of goddesses and gods. He is a trained actor and performs his poems widely.

-Caroline Johnstone

is an author and poet from Northern Ireland now living in Scotland. She has been published widely including Poetry Scotland, The Blue Nib and Marble Poetry. She loves spending time with her grandchildren, curling up with a good book and champagne or cocktails in no particular order. 

-Lesley Curwen

is a poet and sailor living in Plymouth. She often writes about loss, rescues and the sea.

Her work has been published in anthologies from Arachne Press, Nine Pens, Quay Words, Slate, snakeskin, and soon by BrokenSpine and Broken Sleep.  

Her poetic relationship with sound has been helped by her work as a BBC broadcaster, editing words on screen.

-Carrie Ann Golden

is from the mystical Adirondack Mountains now living on a farmstead in the Red River Valley of North Dakota (USA). She writes dark fiction and poetry. A Deafblind, her work has been published in places such as GFT Press, Doll Hospital Journal, The Hungry Chimera, Asylum Ink, Piker Press, Edify Fiction and others. You can find her on her writing blog as well as Medium and Twitter.  

-Jen Feroze

lives by the sea in Essex with her husband and two small children. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in a variety of publications including Ink Sweat & Tears, Chestnut Review, Atrium and The Madrigal. Her first collection, The Colour of Hope, was published in 2020 and she’s currently working on a chapbook of poems about early motherhood. 

-Paul Brookes

is a shop asst in a supermarket. Lives in a cat house full of teddy bears. First play performed at The Gulbenkian Theatre, Hull.  His chapbooks include The Fabulous Invention Of Barnsley, (Dearne Community Arts, 1993). A World Where and She Needs That Edge (Nixes Mate Press, 2017, 2018) The Spermbot Blues (OpPRESS, 2017), Please Take Change (, 2018), As Folk Over Yonder ( Afterworld Books, 2019). He is a contributing writer of Literati Magazine and Editor of Wombwell Rainbow Interviews, book reviews and  challenges. 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. Most recent is a poetry collaboration with artworker Jane Cornwell: “Wonderland in Alice, plus other ways of seeing”, (JCStudio Press, 2021)

4 thoughts on “Day 12. My annual National Poetry Month 2022 ekphrastic challenge is a collaboration between artists Gaynor Kane, John Phandal Law, Anjum Wasim Dar, and writers, Ailsa Cawley, Tim Fellows, Math Jones, Merril D. Smith, Jamie Woods, Lesley James, Lesley Curwen, Carrie Ann Golden, Peter A., Barbara Leonhard, Jane Dougherty, Eloise Birnam-Wood, Jen Feroze, Vicky Allen, Simon Williams,, Jona Roy, Beth Brooke, Caroline Johnstone, Lynne Jensen Lampe and myself. April 12th.

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