All poetry, photographs and artwork © the individual artists who can be contacted through the links below

Monday, 27 August 2012

From the Cornerstone Readings

A Blackness

As clear as night
wings like ink
drawn in non-flight;
more positive than anything
is that Rook on the rooftop opposite.

Its wide-nosed beak
scans feathers
for insects or dirt,
coat clean and brilliantine,

upstaging the Jackdaw
hidden in slate—

like a so-called Eskimo
wrapped in sealskin
or centuries of a misconceived othering.


Rook really took the biscuit, though;
all the colours swam into him,
absorbed their differences
to nothing,
a negative-positive
to outshine the Sun,

a blackness that turns day
and night
back to light.

Nalini Paul

Nalini Paul

Chrys Salt's tribute to Adrian Mitchell -

With Adrian at the Peace Festival
if you saw him running it was because he’d spotted truth in the crowd and was chasing it if you saw him smiling it was at a good deed waving from a balcony if you saw him jumping it was in a playground with all the other daft kids on the block raising anarchy if you heard him singing it was girls and boys come out to play if you saw him laughing he was laughing he was really laughing if you saw him waving it was to say HELLO come in and join the feast of the human race if you saw him writing it was a love letter to the world on the day of its crucifixion if you saw him dancing it was to a Beatles tune about giving peace a chance and waiting for that moment to arrive
Chrys Salt


I waited anxiously at the bus stop.
Two old ladies behind me
and a younger woman with a child
behind them formed the queue.

And when the bus arrived I panicked.
I encouraged the elderly ladies on first
then I motioned to the young woman,
discretely falling in behind her.

I wanted no association with these
old women – for we were leagues apart –
the mother and child much preferred
with my bus pass sweating in my palm.

I dreaded the bus driver’s eyes
as I dreaded the pad for the pass.
I felt sure he would question my age
as I felt sure I would fumble the pass.

All things pass, of course. It happened
without a word or the faintest of fumbles,
my pointless exasperation grounded in the vanity
of an uneasy, newly retired, senior citizen.

James Aitken

Geneva, August 2010 (from Gold Tracks, Fallen Fruit)

the wild sail of the water fountain
flaps a sheet of light across the Lac LĂ©man -
from the cathedral bell-tower
it looks like a thread of torn lace
round the city’s wrist

Geneva rooftops (photo Morelle Smith)

 Scotland, East Coast, August 2012

passing through a narrow tunnel
that winds between the banks of sand –
no warning - the flat sea has spilled over the horizon -
it’s as if the dunes first protected you
then pushed you out

dunes, sea (photo by Morelle Smith)

Morelle Smith

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