A Poem Should Punch You In The Face

A poem should punch you in the face

A singular sensation explosion,

Instant, Insane, Electric.

For one searing second,

Sense solidifies.

Analyse all you want

Reap reams, rolls and rotas.

Give a psychoanalytic prognosis

Of peoples private paradises.

Fit it to your world view.

But if you haven’t got a black eye

It wasn’t a Great poem.

Freddie Hoskin

Autumn/Winter Divide

Rolling, falling into a landscape,

Brown with berries;

Trees, possessive of leaves,

But giving to the wind

Gradually, reluctantly;

Water rushing clear to a new destination

Only known to water,

Its soldiers stampeding forward,

‘Hurry onwards’;

Sky, full of foreboding, tempestuous,

A football match before throw-in,

Ready, explosive;

The rabbits scatter in all directions,

Families unite in warmth, protection;

Birds leave the pool or arrive as the case may be –

What’s cold for many is warm for some,

Nature’s hidden intricacies globally interlocking;

The sun, a retired General

Telling stories no one is interested in,

Its beams are only cold streaks of light

On the surface of the water;

Fields, like wounds awaiting salt,

Blades of grass the most resilient of all;

Frost, that hungry monster,

Attacking lost souls left to drift, wander;

Swirls of whirls of gusting air

Knocking on a farmhouse window;

The occupants pouring hot drinks,

A child on his grandfather’s knee

Listening, swallowing adult stories;

An owl in a barn, unmoved, protected,

Takes it all in an inevitable;

Cows lowing, they need to be milked

Day in, day out, regardless;

The old dirt track awaiting snow,

Awaiting the imprint of tractor tyres

A child’s foot would step into,

A child dressed in hat and scarf,

A child beholding birth and death;

The changing thrush continues singing

The song of ever changing earth

In one note, prolonged, quivering;

The song of Season’s restless heart,

Breaking, rejoicing, tearing, rebuilding,

Stuck inside but breaking out,

And crumbling to dream again and dream again;

And one swan replaces another across the surface,

Gliding, gliding towards Beauty, Strength, Promise –

Fragility remains constant!   

– Michael Donohue

Luckless Romantic

I don’t know why I can’t love you.

But the songs that move me now,

aren’t the same ones that drove my feet to your doorstep

Up the hill on a hot summer afternoon,

desperate for your arms around me.

When I needed you like the air I breathe,

Like the music in my headphones

on the long lonely bus ride back home

When each song was a countdown

to when you would kiss me again.

But now my heart breaks,

Not for you,

Not for another,

But for everything undiscovered

And for the girl who used to stare at the skyline from the rooftop, desperately hopeful.

I can’t march to your beat anymore and you could never dance to mine,

So I find myself sitting on the rooftop once more, hungry for that horizon.

You were my refuge in a world gone mad,

But now I think the madness was inside my head all along.

I locked it up tight

But it chewed and clawed at the walls of my mind

until I could contain it no longer.

And like a disease it’s spread,

gripping my heart in a chokehold,

asking questions

I just don’t want answers to;

Is love a lie?

Something fleeting that can never last forever,

Or am I just not cut out for all things everlasting?

It would be so easy to blame it on love;

Life is no fairytale

And I was always destined to stop missing your warm heartbeat next to mine.

But like the madness that creeps through my body,

I strongly suspect

It’s just me.

I loved you when we were young,

When the pull of the world outside this little town was a call I couldn’t answer.

When you were everything I could ever need

And the thought of losing you was a sadness I couldn’t bear

without tears pricking my otherwise stony eyes.

I thought I would love you forever,

I was certain of it.

I loved you when we were young,

But I’m older now

And I can’t love you like I did.

I strongly suspect,

It’s all just madness.

– A.H

Best Go Home

best go home

chain drink


and flatten my


as they hang

in the air.


Nirvana Tempera On Silk

O day I have not lost you, for I stand

In silence at your marriage vows to night.

Tis dusk as Venus shines above a land

That yearns for the almost abandoned light.

The pale moon flickers while the nightingale

Conducts a choir that croon the wedding tunes –

Mellifluous old marches as you arrive

With grace in seraph-knitted silk. The veil

You wear has sheltered stars the shepherd soon

Wont seek – they are the stars on which I thrive –

Joseph Fieldstone