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  Leah Cohen

The Email Queen

Song- Dedicated to those who know who they are

They all call me the Email Queen
Before I came, their screens were clean.
and, now they get at least ten every day.
Do they complain? Oh yes they do.
Do I send less? I try, it's true
but somehow they all seem to get away

I write them quick and get them out
no click is spared, while they're about
before I know it, 30 have gone
from outbox to the sent and on

into the air and out to them
now mind you, not each one's a gem
but how do I know which jokes they find fun
and so I send them as they are,
as they arrive from near and far
The Email Queen keeps sending every one

now in-between the jokes I choose
to send updates, and latest news
and minutes of the recent meeting
write it fast cos thoughts are fleeting

maybe try for public money
costs are rising, it's not funny
just to keep write angle in full view
So then they all cry and complain
that these emails are such a pain
and tell me they don't know just what to do

I say 'delete', delete the spam
that fills their mailbox, steals their ram
They say they can't tell which is what
cos everything that comes is not

So now I'm going to join AA
and go cold turkey all the way
I'll bet they miss them when they don't come through
It's one thing to get far too many,
what if then, there aren't any
when they shout, I'll say 'too bad for you'!

Attila the Leah










Simple Sound

The single sound
unweathered face
unwrinkled clothes
never bend to form a smile

Hiding many thoughts
in preplanned space.
Colours ground of earth
height stilted by the trees
dreams lifted past the skies
The sun, his only means of light
He drifts unnoticed.

No one sees
He won't allow
Too immersed in  life
to know what's there
or what he's left behind.

His past, a mystery
his mind, of books all read
Absorbed, but his alone

He doesn't speak a word more
than he must
or do a thing more
than he does
He can't be moved an inch.

And yet, he sways to music
sways to music
in a way
no one can match.

How can you reach him
touch him
When to touch him
Makes him disappear?



Leah performing at the Chelsea Arts Club

  Chris Sangster


Whatever rhymes with ‘Metze’?
There were no tetse flies,
I said I’d write this poem -
We had no Turkish fries

Whatever rhymes with ‘Lovely’?
The lady and the meal,
The service was so helpful
As guests, were made to feel.

Whatever rhymes with ‘Fez’ now?
That’s where we won our prize,
The Turkish food impressive
In hues and taste and size.

Whatever rhymes with ‘Bayildi’
And ‘Baklava’ and ‘Sis’?
I give up – but just go there
If you like lamb more than feesh (sorry!)

Whatever rhymes with ‘Friendly’?
It’s that atmosphere low-key,
In Chapel Street in Petersfield
If you’re going …… please take me!

  John Deprey

Groaning bones of marble,
honeyed by the setting sun,
insist on a right angle.

Temple of Poseidon at Suniou
("Sunium's marbled steep"), Greece. January 2003

  Harry Haines


And the sun shone.
And the trees nodded the afternoon away,
Sleepy with the warm, wine air;
Like tolerant patriarchs,
Hardly disturbed by the comings and goings
Of the fussing infants of birds.
And the grasses scratched each other's backs
And whispered wisely over their common gossip.
While the daisies, like children dressed
For an old-fashioned Sunday occasion
Held their heads high for smiling
And the distant rabbit danced no shadows
falling of snares and foxes.
Only my feet, brushing through meadow,
Released the 'blow-clocks' into drifting,
Musing their dream like, 'she loves me
Song and dance of a fable storied away.
So for the moment I was the sun shining,
A blade of grass, tree dreaming
And warm, belonging and knowing the clay,
Air and all, because
I accepted them, with myself, as being.
And lying down in the long grass
Broke the fever of my fears
And I slept to the lullaby of midges
And awoke, like falling in love, to the world.'

From For You and You
The Collected Poems of Harry Haynes 1951-2011
(May be purchased from the publisher - Spinnaker Press)

  Armando Halpern    
Armando has been writing poetry and fiction for a long time, carrying in his luggage 2 books (published in Portuguese), The Queen of the Night (short-stories) and The Secret of the Knight (novel).
Some time after arriving in the UK, the language in which his poetry is written changed to English, as if he could breathe the language of the country. Since then, he has been a frequent presence in a number of poetry cafes and other events.
He strongly believes that there is a place for poetry in our life and society, trying to deliver it with the best of his abilities.
Editor of Ariadne's Thread Literary Magazine .
  Armando's Blog Click on Armando's Blog to see some of his work  
  David Knight The Ranting of a Built-in Fridge

Why am I hidden away Everyday and every night?
Are you ashamed of me,  
Is it because I’m white.
That slut out there thinks she’s such a looker
With flames that flicker,
that whore of the cooker.
Yeah and microwave you should know your own limits
All smug on the worktop,
well it only takes you two minutes.
and you bloomin toaster,
yeah you over there leaving crumbs everywhere,
’ll tell you want i think,
why dont you take a run and a jump,
right in that sink.
and you, yes you over there,
taking the pee out of their underwear,
yeah you washing machine ,
making all of that din,
you can just jog on,
yeah you can just spin.
And I’m hidden in the cupboard like some kind of dunce
touch my thermostat,
you’ve only played with my knob once
are you angry with with me,
are you cross
stick your hands in my salad draws,
something in there needs a toss.
come on open me up,
 I’ll light up your eyes,
Look deep inside there’s champagne,
You’re just jealous,
yes jealous,
treating me so unkind,
with one red hot behind.

  The Enemy Within

Enough I said
As I was out of my head
Enslaved by these drugs I am
Enfeeble they do
Turn my entrails to stew
Enforcing me to not give a damn

They Enlighten, entertain
At the expense of my brain
Enveloping a fog in my mind
As I endure each temptation
An enormous operation
To erase what’s engraved is a bind

I’ll endeavour to engage
Clean living till old age>
As I enter each day more enriched
I’ll enjoy, be enthralled
As the addiction is stalled
As the enemy I befriended is ditched

(By David knight - Dec 2008)


Sometimes I can’t concentr
My mind often wande
I often get distract
Every time I try to pond
I've done too many narcoti
My minds starting to dimini
Cos every time I do somethi
I never seem to fin


Mr T Bag

I’m Mr T bag
Short and stout
Dip me in
And pull me out
In the steaming cup Jacuzzi
Miss’s milk is such a floozy
Miss’s sugars getting flirty
I always leave the water dirty

(By David knight - Dec 2008)



My hands smell of oranges
My dishes smell of apples
My washing smells mountain fresh
These scentedmental marketing ploys annoy
I said under my minty fresh breath



Fairy cakes
Cup cakes
Sponge cakes
Battenberg cakes
All in one take
Bloody mistake
Stomach ache

  Jake Claret The Photograph

Soon after they had met,
he took her picture with his new camera.
He thought she looked so good,
showed it to her with pride.

Then they had their first fight.
She snatched the picture.
angrily tore it up,
and flung the pieces down.

He gathered them all up,
smoothed and taped them till her face appeared again.
Slipped it in his wallet.
Kept this treasure hidden.

They were long together.
Thirty-two years.
She died. He lived on,
surviving two more wives.

He did not want to hurt
his second or his third.
So in their homes, there never were
pictures of the others.

Thirty-two more years had passed.
He died and then, everything was sorted out,
the many books and things
he had through all the years.

The old creased wallet still was there.
crumpled, full of papers,
and, in the small window,
the taped up photo.

He always believed he’d meet her
on the other side.
Young and beautiful,
as in that photograph.

Jake's poem in the Portsmouth Anthology
  JeanAnne Naumczyk

Just Dropping In!

You won’t believe the mess I’m in, you won’t believe it’s true.
A great big puffy pigeon went and nested in my flue.
When I first heard the cooing noise, I thought how awfully sweet,
Until rumble, crash and bang and whoosh, it landed at my feet.

It looked like a large blackbird, covered beak to tail in soot.
And as it landed, I saw where each sooty foot he put.
My designer living room looked like the devil’s grotto
And I was sorely tempted to sit down and just get blotto.

But this black and puffy pigeon eyed me up, down, left and right
Gave me the distinct impression that it blamed me for its plight.
No you don’t, I thought indignantly, you can’t blame me for that
And I knew one way to settle it, - I went and got the cat!!!

(No living creature was injured in the making of this poem!)

The Oliver Cromwell

We set off on a wonderful train trip,
That headed into the West.
We boarded the Oliver Cromwell,
Dressed in our Victorian best.
Many people were dressed in smart costumes,
Special effort made just for this day.
Such an atmosphere of great fun and romance,
As the steam train chugged on its way.
The smell of the smoke and the sound of the whistle
As the Cromwell steamed on down the track,
With the wonderful weather and sumptuous food,
It was all too soon time to turn back.
This fabulous trip passed so quickly
And although we missed Petersfield's fun,
This day was a day to remember,
The 150 year celebratory run!
Some may say it is just a day out on a train,
But believe me, we'd happily do it again!

Click on the thumbnail below to see the article  
  Roy Fairchild

Another Christmas

[Two friends have told me this]
You know how it can be,
as we sit in the armchairs
watching the telly,
Graham's mum
in her upright,
which is good
for her back,
her cats asleep,
in the spare room,
with the put-up bed,
and the ironing board.

We were watching the Flintstones,
(too loudly)
And she says,
'Those cars are old fashioned,
'aren't they?'

'We look at the telly,
nod our heads.
what else could we do?'
Paper hats rustle on our ears]

Fred and Barney,
in the front,
their legs,
are all but a blur.

Wilma and Betty
in the back,
their hair,
in the wind,
not a care in the world.

Click on the poster to see full sized version
  Bill Woods

A Christmas Trilogy 2008

Christmas Eve, The Gathering

I lie, head full of snot and Olbas oil
As the party hour beckons

Familiar faces, fewer each year gather
Most still standing around canapés and wine

Each year, a new couple enter the group
Southern migration halted by the harbour shore

Formulaic dissection of children's achievements boost smug satisfaction
The annual weighing of the offspring

How subtly the rules change
Post degree, post-career, post-partner
Individuality massively cherished, before
Grandchildren begin the game again

At 11:20 PM guests depart for the choir vestry
Midnight Holy Communion waits
Damp robes, damp handkerchief,
Cheerful anticipation of happiness

The Herald Harks, Christmas 2008 begins with gusto
Surprised, I look up to see wife and daughters enter the gallery
Yes, separated by altitude and attitude but safely in the same building
A festive family once more

They return home by a different way
Then through the front door
Our family fireside love burns bright

December 24, 2008

Christmas Family at Play

What happened to books and discourse?
About events and emotions?
Probable and improbable, historic and heroic
Where are the tales of men?
In Guitar Hero and Afghanistan

Each Christmas parents exchange books
Intelligent Young adults unpack virtual reality
In Xbox, plastic drum kit, bass, lead guitar and vocals
Where is reality?
In lovingly home-made DVD and Afghanistan

Happy hours roll by with 97% accuracy scores
And star power galore
Demoted from bass to drums, to vocals
To my study, the band is able to rock.
Without me
Where is reality?
In fast, accurate fingers and Afghanistan

The presents I give are as practical as I am-
A windup torch and compass for A in South America
Trail towel for S in Australia
A watercolour for B, reminder of our south coast walk
Where is the geography of love?
In laptop communication and Afghanistan

Improving on previous best in shared public performance
This is the meaning of the 2008 Christmas
The machinery a neutral background for empathic love
Love of being in the band
Where is the family?
The family is the band and Afghanistan

December 26, 2008

The Journey North-a Sheffield Christmas

A stray numbered dustbin gave the game away
After 230 motorway miles
Searching for 95 Little Norton Lane

Somehow, the anticipated star over the manger
Where my sister's family and my parents lay
Hid behind low cloud
A windup LED torch and Google map
Sufficed to find the stable

It was late in a far off Yorkshire County
When the locked doorbell rang
Surprised, the nephew asked within
Whether the southern couple might be admitted

At the back,
Through the front sitting /TV room
Dining/computer room, lay the Christmas parents
In the extended garden room

Enthroned on wicker chairs they sat
Celebrating the holy birth of a Christmas family gathering

No animals, no welcome
No byre, no handshakes, no motorway discourse
But a welcome cup of Aldi tea

This stable brimmed with Christmas tat
Mains powered
Windup and solar powered
But no sun shone, on the eldest son

Is there a net Northward drift of tat via Mansfield and Sheffield to Lapland?
As the eBay transactions foretold?
Is tat a new language of love?

We exchanged calendars headed by family photos
Loving photos
Memories of innocence and youth
The first 20 years of marriage

The stall, imbued with tat lacked food
Being the hour of pass over we went abroad in Sheffield, Sea King food
Another inn with young keeper, motioned a table for seven
Handily next to the kitchen stable doors

No synchronicity of tat in this inn!
Each meal, 10-15 minutes from its sister
Sequential noshing with Stella seasoning
In a beef filled byre

Eventually, each course measured
We headed stable wards through this once proud manufacturing landscape
Magi in a foreign land


Christmas love
Intersecting age, attitude, ambition
Time and space.

December 28, 2008










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