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18. Featuring: Edge Hill University Poetry & Poetics Research Group

Including:

Robert Sheppard + Cliff Yates + Patricia Farrell + Scott Thurston + Alice Lenkiewicz + Neil Addison + Colin Harris + Steve Van Hagen + Daniele Pantano + Andrew Taylor

Alice Lenkiewicz

Panel 2

I walked as far as the turning point, comprehended a woman in a raincoat
beside her empty trailer, filled with scattered particles, remnants of voices,
too much like being in a western, all those jeans and empty gazes. Then,
the sky opened. Water poured down upon her body.

She was able to lift off the glass lid and swallow liquids inside, one by
one, blue, then yellow and green. The glass absorbed a memory,
transmitting the emptiness of the night before, not the kind of thing you
would normally choose for a romantic weekend but then we agreed that the
future is impossible, so they at least felt blessed.

No mountains, deserts, speeches, or crazy blue butterflies here, to bargain
your best guns! Anger, of course was always part of growing up, useless
plaits and blazers, all that walking up swiss alps. Oh, to hurl oneself
under that truck or glide peacefully towards the farmhouse on some kind of
winged contraption.

The white dress rustles towards the abandoned beach. All those maniacs,
no good pretending it didn’t happen, no point in thinking it went smoothly.
I like to be part of that nonsense and anyway, I enjoy this seedy nightclub.
In the end the space is there for both you and I, never attaching itself to
just one person. The tragedy compartments just wouldn’t subside but the
memory sparkles in the sunshine today.

The betrayal is surrounding me. Why did I think it was her when it was
him all along? Those who met the flower junkies died but they taught us
something. They taught us something glamorous. Surely you know what I
mean? She lay down as the past streamed through her, out of her thoughts
like rusty old wire.

Neil Addison

The Trimmer Today

The sky is all tooled-up,
The sunset a rich harvest of downed tools.

Kiss goodnight
to this disappearance already
and make ready for the morrow.
It is marginally wise,

even with the sun pegged against dick-wads,
rip-tides, rain-proof goods.

Here lies
another year of smoke without fire

hell-bent on sky-writing

imploring us to hurry on home.

I’m talking about breaking news,
‘The World’s Biggest Omelette’,
all those two-bit millions it’s licensed to earn
from sponsored dragnets, daffy meanings,

baffling arcs.

As storytellers
they reek of common sense,

unable to locate any moments
without earning
along the way, upending

the primary carcass.

Colin Harris

The Forgotten Camera In The Glove Box

A and B met and fell in love
they got married and moved in together
things were great for a while
then they started fighting
this went on for a ridiculously long time
until neither could tell the difference
between marriage and divorce
A developed the hobby of making B miserable
B developed the hobby of being made miserable by A
despite themselves they woke one morning
and dreamed of something better

Steve Van Hagen

Naypyidaw

in Naypyidaw did the uncrowned king
follow the astrologer’s dictate

take the battered road north of Rangoon until
the dirt track morphs into
an eight-line highway spanning
scrub land and a hovering horizon;
the highway is empty save
for horses, carts and the occasional
blacked-out junta SUV

streets are silent as the graves, note
the smiles of forced labourers
who avert their eyes, then scurry;
half-built shopping centres
and neoclassical bank buildings stutter
into unsure, apologetic existence
while police office signs ask nobody
May I Help You?

down any side alley
the ghosts meander of the monks
who received this help in Rangoon
and Mandalay, they saunter
as far as the bunkers,
golf courses and five-star-hotel
casinos

yours are the only Western eyes
ever to see this place

Andrew Taylor

From the 39th Floor

Streets mapped as if by Haussmann midtown
Polaroid age of colour daily news traffic

increase uptown to extended neon billboards
billowing smoke and steam from the roadway

Almost half a century on the skyline remains
enforced demolition these streets carry histories

There’s some nice parts of Manhattan you can
see them from here

Couples in love wandering hand in hand
flocks of birds in small parks

taking drink in bars grey atmosphere of backrooms
authentic coffee from delis polystyrene cups

Go everywhere by foot exploration a natural way
to Lexington and 52nd Street stand above the subway ventilation

[acknowledgements to eralsoto]