Stella Wulf – Simple Liberties

Simple Liberties

When hope returns
with the prodigal Spring
your heart soars like a swift
to the far-fetched blue.

When your children revel
in a reservoir of years
and your parents still tell you
what not to do.

When your cats bring gifts
of fur and feather
and your friends are gracious
and forgive each other.

When tolerance is your home
and freedom, your open doors
when you’ve lived without persecution
never fought in any wars.

When the world’s a swan’s egg
laid in a peacock’s clutch,
you know it’ll crack open
and ugliness will hatch.

Stella Wulf lives in South West France. She has an MA in Creative Writing, from Lancaster University and her work has been widely published, both in print and online magazines and journals. Her poems have been included in several anthologies including, The Very Best of 52, three drops from a cauldron, and the Clear Poetry Anthology. She is also an artist and her work can be seen on her website:

Harry Gallagher – Progress

(After Alan Bennett)
There’s an economic forum
on the television, mother;
they’re hiving off the library,
using words learned from books.
There’s no money in dry pages
being shared around for nowt,
when that dusty old shell
could be a thriving Wetherspoons.
Where instead of education,
which will never pay its way,
the poorest could be helped
into serving knockdown drinks
to the already knocked down,
who know a good thing
when they see it.

Harry Gallagher’s work has been published widely, including 3 pamphlets currently available.  His debut full collection is due in the autumn from Stairwell Books.  He is co-founder of The Stanza at Newcastle and also runs the North East stanza for the Poetry Society.  He performs live up and down the UK.

Marilyn Longstaff – Following the Supreme Court ruling yesterday

Maurice Devitt – Future Proof

Future Proof

I read somewhere
that, after Brexit and Trump,
God had taken
to watching The News
on catch-up, praying
that someone
might intervene.
So I wrote to him,
politely suggesting
that changing channel
could erase
all recent history. 


Maurice Devitt has had poems published in Ireland, England, Scotland, the US, Mexico, Romania, India and Australia, is curator of the Irish Centre for Poetry Studies site and a founder member of the Hibernian Writers’ Group.

Kate Noakes – Two Poems

Not knowing the difference between weather and climate
In my Girl Guide manual
the Beaufort scale said
nought is a calm day, evidenced
not by scudding clouds or laundry
flapping on the line, the bend
and snap of branches or
a noticeable difficulty walking
but by vertical smoke
the perfect signal from a bonfire
and I remember ten is a hurricane
but there being no eleven
needed now to gauge
overheated hydrogen sulphide
and the dangerous blustery air
commonly known as a trump.
Gold and mirrors give my wife migraines

and we didn’t want to wait for the library

decades before we bind any books
so, we softened the decor.

Chocolate to coffee cream lampshades
go well, don’t you think?

They did a great job, a great job
hiding forearm tattoos in the stitching.

I like the sound when you flick them.
Kind of a drum. Tarum Tarum.

Kate Noakes lives in London and Paris. Her publications include:
Ocean to Interior, Mighty Erudite, 2007
The Wall Menders, Two Rivers Press, 2009
Cape Town, Eyewear Publishing, 2012
I-spy and shanty, corrupt press, 2014
Tattoo on Crow Street, Parthian, 2015
Paris Stage Left, Eyewear 2017
Website archived by the National Library of Wales