Poetry – Issue 4.1

The Meter Magpie

by Anna Cathenka

scoobidy boo bop the magpie
talks in meter feet are bib bob scatting
stealing shiny snippets the rib rib
magpie mimics artists’ practice
unnoticed the bee bob meter magpie
skibbidy pop pops in black and white
feet hop the free hop
jazzed up corvid
pippity pop pops the free verse
flippity hop hops in improv
yippity do wop it won’t stop
bee bop flip flop
flying and ribbing
and ribbidy wee wah weaving
a work of waste word nest



by Bill Cushing

The wolf bares fangs
even when sleeping.

Legs move
in rapid dream-twitches;
cheeks quiver from tickling
branches that swipe his head.

Leading the hunt,
he chases with others of the pack–
11111111111sweaty fear
11111111111fills his nostrils
11111111111and sanguine expectation
11111111111tingles through his flanks.

then ripping
at the flanks of a deer,
they jump
with him, as one.
Then, the imagined pack
straddles its fallen meal,
without grace.

A lullaby of teeth,
as enamel scrapes against bone,
and the song of sinew,
stretching before tearing free from
the cooling carcass,
fill his night.

Stac an Armin

by David J. Costello

Oddly drenched,
the granite shark’s fin
sheds its gannets
in a perforating
avalanche of white.
From a distance
it deforms into
its own reflection,
dips its dirty icing
in the cold Atlantic swell.
Poses for my camera
like a newly laundered sheet.
Keened to spikes
the gannets pitch a plunge
and stitch my picture
back into its frame.

Note: Stac an Armin is a sea stack in St Kilda’s archipelago. It’s the site of the largest breeding colony of Gannets in the world.


by Jan Moran Neil

Mother Hyena:
clearing agent of the Weld,
stripper of white bones;
powdered faeces, false penis,
howling, hunchbacked editor.



by Jenifer DeBellis

111111111111111illume / i lo͞om / verb
111111111111111illuminate; light up.

The first one was lucky to die
within a week. The second one shrunk

daily, its dorsal fin and caudal lobes
notched like a skeleton key, its eyes

bulged in a state of eternal fright.
The third week claimed the second

goldfish, and the fighter fish lasted
another day—its bloated body

floating alongside its broken heart.


by Joan Lennon

In the night the sea’s slow breath
rolled up from the shore,
filmed over colour with damp,
smudged the trees beyond the wall.

Each note of the blackbird’s challenge
swims past the window now
like a line of fish
patrolling the misted perimeter.

Even the crows stay low,
oar cautiously,
reluctant to bump against
the lid of the sky.

Poet Biographies:

Anna Cathenka is a non-fiction writer and poet studying Creative Writing at Falmouth University. She explores language at the meeting point between the human and the ‘natural’. Her poetry has been published in WiTH and The Wardrobe and she can be found online @annacathenka

Bill Cushing earned an MFA in creative writing from Goddard College and currently teaches English classes at both Mount San Antonio and East Los Angeles colleges. He has previously had poems published in Avocet, Brownstone Review, Penumbra, genius & madness, the Onion River Review, the Synergist, Spectrum, the Sabal Palm Review,andMetaphor. He has had work published in two anthologies, Getting Old and Stories of Music, as well as having a short story due out in Newtown Literary Journal.

David J. Costello lives in Wallasey, Merseyside, England. He is a member of Chester Poets. David has been widely published on-line and in print including Prole, The Lake, Provo Canyon Review, Magma and Envoi. David is a previous winner of the Welsh International Poetry Competition. His debut pamphlet, “Human Engineering”, was published by Thynks Publishing in October 2013. A second pamphlet will appear in September 2016 from Red Squirrel Press.

Jan Moran Neil has a Masters in Creative Writing from the University of Cambridge. Winner of BBC Writers’ short story competition. She has been running Creative Ink for Writers for 15 years. Her fifth play: A President in Waiting … was performed at the Desmond Tutu HIV Youth Foundation Centre , Cape Town last November. Her novel Blackberry Promises is available on Amazon as is her first collection of poetry and short stories: Serving Bluebird Pie. She is a regular contributor to Writing Magazine. www.janmoranneil.co.uk/blog

Jenifer DeBellis is Pink Panther Magazine’s editor. She’s a Solstice MFA grad and former Meadow Brook Writing Project Fellow. DeBellis teaches creative writing for Baker College and Oakland University’s Writing Camps. She’s published in the Aurorean, AWP’s Festival Writer, BAC Street Journal, the Good Men Project, and Solstice Lit Mag.

Joan Lennon is a Scottish-Canadian/Canadian-Scottish writer, living in Fife, in a flat overlooking the River Tay. She has had novels, stories and poems published for readers of all ages. Her latest YA novel, Silver Skin, is set in Skara Brae, Orkney. www.silver-skin.co.uk