Issue 1 index

Meet the Editors & Designers


Rhys Shanahan

Rice Paper
Damon Young

Hopkins & Hallam
Note from Naomi Lebens

Before I go I have to say...
Kate Pursglove

Some Other Where
Steven Matthews

Weekend Poems: Breakfast
Eleanor Burleigh

Aged 7
Jean Watkins

Childhood & Plastic People
Zeng Chen

Street Scene
Peter Robinson

A Martian Writes
Michael Hutchinson

The Tarot Reading of The Fool

Stop Making Sense & Bla bla bla
Jenna Fox

Fringe Festival
Claire Dyer

When you have hope of life returning, this
Kate Noakes

Broadwood 7362
Gill Learner

A Drop in the Ocean
Lindsey Jones

Pitch of Ghosts
Vic Pickup

23rd February 2021
Kitty Hawkins

The Sofa
Tara Bermingham

Trophies on a Windowsill? & Still (monetizing) Life
Laura Rozamunda

Good to know perhaps, but nothing to be done
Kate Noakes

Heading Out
Michael Anania

The Threshold
David Brauner

Hannah Lily

Park Recollection
Liam Anslow-Sucevic

Rhianna Bryon

Ephemerality of the World
Salma Haque

The August Elvis Died
Gill Learner

Michael Anania

Hit Me Gently
Daisy Dickens

Rice Paper

When I was about seven, my mum and I discovered
the novelty of biting through rice paper and letting 

it snowflake on our tongues. It was our exotic secret,
pasted fish-skin thin onto a pulpy, seed- ridged fruit bar. 

My nan joined us once and we formed a street coven to
sample these strange, freshly bought treats. Mum and I

mischievously withheld our knowledge of the miraculous
edible wrapper and nan’s wise, steel-sprung fingers padded

ineffectively at the vacuum-shrunk white
cover. Her face peering at their failure.

My delight at being the bearer of a hidden truth gave way
to the bodily buzz of loss. Those life-coarsened fingers that

seemed to have ripped a place in the world for me, were now
diligent but outfoxed; reduced to the cluelessness of childhood.

Her last days, decades later, seemed a slow erosion back
to the earth from which she was shaped. There was a wildness

beneath her tumbleweed hair and feeding, soothing
and tending became dependant on the hands of others.

A lovebeam of a greeting was late to disappear, but eventually
gave way to a frown of alarm, as my shape in the doorway

became unfamiliar to her. Her fingers, stripped of certainty,
became swollen and her gold wedding band began to bite.

Pliers held with surgical care snipped it in two, in
order to relieve its unsustainable pressure. As I looked

at the waxy white circle of newly uncovered skin where
the ring had been, I felt rice paper sadness once more.

Biography: Damon Young has been published in a variety of journals, is a winner of the Alzheimer’s Society Poetry Prize, has been commended in the Prole Laureate Prize, long-listed for the Canterbury Festival Poet of the Year and short-listed for The Robert Graves Poetry Prize, The Wells Festival of Literature Poetry Prize, The Brian Dempsey Memorial Prize, and the Welshpool Poetry Prize. He helps to run the Reading Stanza of the Poetry Society and Reading’s Poets’ Cafe.

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