Day 28. My annual National Poetry Month 2023 ekphrastic challenge is a collaboration between artists Aaron Bowker, Beth Brooke, Oormila Vijayakrishnan Prahlad, Sara Fatima Mir, and writers, Tim Fellows, Jamie Woods, Merril D. Smith, Anjum Wasim Dar, Jane Dougherty, Robert Frede Kenter, Paul Dyson, Frank Colley, Lynne Jensen, Kushal Poddar and myself. April 28th.



Nightfall at Minnamurra (OVP28)- Poetry and places


Cherry Blossom

Our return home from Paris
was heartbreaking.
The house the gardens
the cherry orchard
in saddened disrepair.

Have we been away too long?
Mismanaged in our exile
taxes, tariffs and bills
unpaid with interest
we were ridiculed, ruined.

We could not disappear
for a second term,
our name our reputation
had to be preserved
in perpetuity.

Outside our window
the saws the axes chop down the trees.
The Cherry Orchard now gone forever,
sold to the highest bidder –
a Monsieur Chekhov.

Paul Dyson

(All images)


We have our roots in the stars,
deep in the tendrilled spaces
where the light is black,
where the darkness sings.

Deep in the tendrilled spaces,
dust settles, moth-winged
scraps of eternity,

where the light is black
and velvet-soft.
Nurseries dream in rainbows,

where the darkness sings
lullabies of silence, wiser than any stone
carved by human hand.

Jane Dougherty

The Cyclops Affair

All these colours, like in a well-cooked meal,
that have their blessings, like cast-offs,
of falling hair, bright red hope between unspeaking
rock. Unpredictable as hearing upside-
down views about branching off to new
things beyond the Fields of Nephilim, all bling
and dissembling – or being struck
down, The Third Eye then — blind to new inspiration.
They lay down on a road of noise so far as to compare
Their World to a miniature Diorama of a Cyclops Affair.

(used all four images)

Robert Frede Kenter

#CC0000 (BB28)
Once you’ve seen the red
there’s nothing else
a field could be full of sheep or cows
and you’d still the bunch of red petals before a stampede
it’s a hard-wired colour awakening
of traffic lights and overdue bills
of coke cans and satin lingerie
of blood spilling, spilt and stained.

Jamie Woods

Inspired by all four images

All Things

All things have their time,
reborn in water, dust, and light,

shells, beaks, and colored blooms,
tenacious and insistent,
even cocooned between grey rocks,
they rise to salute the sun-bright sky.

Fledglings peek from sheltered nest
to test the wind with opened eyes,
their flight-feathers overlay the down–
still, they cry for sheltering wings

on dappled boughs, the shadows sigh
remembering winter’s gloaming
the bright azure turned to violet,
and bare branches trembling in the snow,

charcoal etchings erased and re-traced–
we ask why, but don’t understand
the universe’s answers.

Merril D Smith

Strange Things (AB28)

Strange things are hanging from the trees
a clear sky obscured
I look up I sense something
is terribly awry, that I have missed
them before
but they weren’t here
or they were smaller
or maybe I went a different way
but the sun is falling now, winking
at me and I think I need
to get out of here

Flower (BB28)

Red flowers bloom, freed
from the miniscule seeds trapped
between two hard stones.

Tim Fellows

(All images)

A new Leviathan

In a cleft, they stand the Poppies.
Between a rock and a hard place
stark opiate of the people and
there blood-red memories of war.

The war that was to end all wars.
Symbolic platitudes for the masses
in blind devotion to a corrupt monarchy.
Wrench them up with gusto.

Spread them far and wide.
Bann then from the new Levithan.
The royal crown has snapped
its jewels sent cascading
circulating the Maundy Money
in a land of milk and honey.

Frank Colliey

Bios and Links

Oormila Vijayakrishnan Prahlad

is an Indian-Australian painter, poet, and improv pianist. She is a self-taught artist who has been painting and exhibiting for over 20 years. Her work has been featured in several journals including Amsterdam Quarterly yearbook, Pithead Chapel, Two Thirds North, Kissing Dynamite Poetry,  and Stonecoast Review. She has been nominated multiple times for the Best of the Net. She lives and works in Sydney on the traditional lands of The Eora Nation.  Find her @oormilaprahlad and

Sara Fatima Mir

Born on the 26th of July, 2007, in Islamabad , Sara Fatima is a Pakistani of Kashmiri origin. Gifted by nature with an inborn aesthetic sense, she is passionate about art. It is not just a hobby for her, rather it is a well settled heart and soul, way of life which inspires her to visualize the fine beauty and form in the world around. She has won numerous art competitions at school level. She is a natural artist and has completed the following two Courses : a) Graphic Designing -2020 b) Resin Art Skills -2022 from the Pakistan Air Force (PAF) Finishing School, Islamabad Capital Territory Pakistan. This learning has further enhanced her artistic skills . International Participation in Art and Poetry Project: Rucksack A Global Poetry Patchwork 2022 A Poetry Project by Ms Antje Stehn of Italy and Mamta Sagar of India. Sara made a Teapot with the help of dried teabags. A requirement .Its image is on display at the Poetry Museum Italy. Sara Fatima Mir believes Art connects people by portraying their lives. Different people, different drawings, different stories. Using all sorts of mediums, she flaunts her amateur talent and aspires to learn more to become the best version of herself. Please Follow her on Instagram @sketchfilez

Beth Brooke

is a Dorset-based poet and her writing is grounded in the Wessex landscape and history. Her debut pamphlet, A Landscape With Birds was published by Hedgehog Poetry in July 2022. Her second pamphlet, Transformations, will be published by Hedgehog next year. The poems are all inspired by the work of Dame Elisabeth Frink, the sculptor and artist.

Aaron Bowker

based in the United States is a super self-critical Virgo, walking a path between worlds while dabbling in art, photography, and poetry. Poems have been featured in Failed Haiku, Cold Moon Journal, The Wombwell Rainbow, and Heterodox Haiku Journal, with art featured in The Hooghly Review, The Wombwell Rainbow, and Black & White Haifa/Haisha. Special thank you to Jerome Berglund for being my mentor and pushing me to limits otherwise unexplored.

Robert Frede Kenter

is a writer, pushcart nominee & visual artist with work in many venues, on line and in print, incl: Storms Journal, Anthropocene, Fevers Of, Acropolis Journal, CutbowQuarterly, Anti-heroin chic and many others, as well as books including EDEN (2021) a visual poetry collection, and Audacity of Form (ice floe press, 2019). Work in anthologies: Book of Penteract (Penteract Press, 2022), and Seeing in Tongues, an anthology forthcoming from Steel Incisors (2023). Robert is publisher & EIC of Ice Floe Press,

Jamie Woods

Swansea-based Jamie Woods is poet-in-residence at the charity Leukaemia Care. His work has been published in Poetry Wales, Lucent Dreaming, Ink Sweat & Tears and more. Jamie’s debut pamphlet Rebel Blood Cells is out in June, and can be pre-ordered from

Jane Dougherty

lives and works in southwest France. A Pushcart Prize nominee, her poems and stories have been published in magazines and journals including Ogham Stone, the Ekphrastic Review, Black Bough Poetry, ink sweat and tears, Gleam, Nightingale & Sparrow, Green Ink and Brilliant Flash Fiction. She blogs at Her poetry chapbooks, thicker than water and birds and other feathers were published in October and November 2020.

Paul Dyson

is from Swinton, Rotherham, in the West Riding of Yorkshire.
He says –

“We all have an urge to be creative
whether it’s art, poetry, music . . .
or just putting together flat pack furniture,
being creative keeps us alive and feeling human”

Paul gave up his day job 5 years ago to dabble in art, poetry and music, and hopes the passion in his Art reaches and touches the hearts of fellow humans too.

Merril D. Smith

lives in southern New Jersey near the Delaware River. Her poetry has been published in journals including Black Bough Poetry, Anti-Heroin Chic, Acropolis, and Humana Obscura, and anthologies, such as the recent Our Own Coordinates: Poems about Dementia (Sidhe Press). Her full-length poetry collection, River Ghosts, was published by Nightingale & Sparrow Press, and was a Black Bough Poetry Book of the Month.

Twitter: @merril_mds  Instagram: mdsmithnj  Blog:

Tim Fellows

is a writer from Chesterfield in Derbyshire whose ideas are heavily influenced by his background in the local coalfields, where industry and nature lived side by side. His first pamphlet “Heritage” was published in 2019. His poetic influences range from Blake to Owen, Causley to Cooper-Clarke and more recently the idea of imagistic poetry and the work of Spanish poet Miguel Hernandez.

Lynne Jensen Lampe’s

debut collection, Talk Smack to a Hurricane (Ice Floe Press, 2022) concerns mother-daughter relationships, mental illness, and antisemitism. Her poems appear in many journals, including THRUSH, Figure 1, and Yemassee. A finalist for the 2020 Red Wheelbarrow Poetry Prize, she edits academic research in mid-Missouri, where she lives with her husband and two dogs. Visit her at; on Twitter/Spoutible @LJensenLampe; or Instagram @lynnejensenlampe.

Frank Colley

lives in South Yorkshire and has been writing poetry all his life. He is an active member of the Read to Write Group and has performed his poems at a wide variety of venues including CAST in Doncaster. His poems have appeared in several anthologies.
He is an admirer of Edward Thomas. His collection “The Story of Soldier A” was published by Glass Head Press in 2022. His self published pamphlet “The Nantcol Sonnets” both are available on eBay.

Kushal Poddar

The author of ‘Postmarked Quarantine’ has eight books to his credit. He is a journalist, father, and the editor of ‘Words Surfacing’. His works have been translated into twelve languages.



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