Thursday, 31 July 2014

How did it get to this? Irena De Filippou

How did it get to this?
Irena De Filippou

How did it get to this?
You wonder distantly,
staring at the ceiling.
You vaguely realise that his tongue is sensually stroking you.
It’s pleasant.
Your body responds,
 but your mind.

Your mind is approximately
 3,955 miles away.
A thud.

Your knee on the wall.
It barely registers.

Also, the fact that he’s scooping you around
with his arm so that he’s now lying under you.
The crackling of a condom package,
and the familiar smell of lubricated rubber.

He’s big.
The pain of him inside you,
more than anything,
 is what yanks you back to the here and now.

Flesh. Silence in between grunts.
You’re under him. His scent. So unfamiliar.

Gasps torn out from your body by the physical act.

Silent, unnoticeable tears.
He stops.
"Are you okay?”
“Don’t stop.”
He continues thrusting.
Until your body is racked with sobs.
He rolls off you. He says nothing.

You lie there, facing the wall. He says nothing.
His fingers run along your back gently,
bringing goose bumps and making you
feel better and worse at the same time. He says nothing.
He says nothing,
and you’re glad he doesn’t.
You don’t want to hear his voice.
After all, you don’t need another reminder
that the man in your bed right now isn’t the man who should be.

Curled up in one corner of the couch Irena De Filippou

Curled up in one corner of the couch
Irena De Filippou

Curled up in one corner of the couch,
 clutching the warm, pink blanket.
 Zoning out.

But intensely aware that so many
things are happening to the body.
Heart’s racing in leaps and bounds.

Every single blink changes
 the fabric of reality a little bit more.
The warm light in the kitchen, fuzzing over.
Hand waving side to side,
leaving trails. Like dragging it through a body of
light gold and orange dust.

So many things to be done.
Can’t. Move.
Need to pee.
Navigate to Toilet unsteadily.
Can’t feel liquids.

Everything feels like liquid.
Liquid. Liquid’s a funny word.  Lick-weeeed. Liquid.
The paint on the walls.

All those layers.
Patches here and there.
How come they weren’t noticeable before?
Could’ve done a better job.

Wipe. Flush. Turn tap on.
More liquid.Mirror.
Face; so unfamiliar.

Could swear the light is flickering.
Each flicker highlights every flaw.
So ugly. But so beautiful, too.
It just is.

And body is just a vessel.
A hardworking vessel.
Does so much, every day.
Thank you, body.
All the things it can do. Like, dance.
Dancing in the toilet.

Is that weird?
But no one is judging.
So listen to the music that’s coming from the speakers in the living room.
And. Dance.
maybe it is a litte weird.
Exit Toilet.

Back to Living Room.
Actually, it’s been hours.
Days? No, hours.

So, pay a visit to
so it won’t feel lonely.
Open the door.
Jumps out at you.
How do humans live in such filth?
Must. Clean.
Fold fresh laundry.
Put away.
Everything in place.

Bits of paper, dust, things on the floor.
Sweep it all up.
Trying to do all this.
But where to start? And where to stop? So many things to clean.
But only on the inside.
Get the fuck out!
“You alright?”
No! Just fucking go already!
Silence. Alone now.
Get up.
Do something.
Get up.
Get up now.
Walk into Kitchen.
Open cupboards.
Open drawers. C
lose. Open again.
Pick up knife.
Everything is numb. What would it feel like?
Just try it.
Just a little bit.

you don’t know what psycho is Irena De Filippou

you don’t know what psycho is
Irena De Filippou

you don’t know what psycho is
until you’ve seen her lose everything
in her mind and let go
screaming things you can’t
even begin to understand
until you’ve spent years in your
own mind with no one to talk to
until you build up every thing you
ever wanted to say to anyone but you never did
until it starts to spill out
and once it overflows
it won’t stop, can’t stop
and you fear the very thing you
witnessed happen to someone you lov
ehappening to you
so you try
and try  to hold back to keep it in
but it won’t stop the tears flow faster
the voices get louder
the pressure in your head
the blood in your veins
and then you lose yourself.
you don’t know what psycho is.

Sheol Catherine Zickgraf

For the Rich Man’s raw throat,
I swallow waterfalls from the faucet until I’m satisfied.
Daddy tells bedtime stories
to warn me of the silver fire
writhing the unfaithful, recounting
how the Rich Man’s echo begged
 Abraham for a drip on the tip of his finger—
for I am in agony in this fire.
But the Father of Nations
denied that small relief, holding his own children to his
chest in death’s cool twilight across the canyon from the

My child, he called out, your life was good, so
you will suffer dead.

Sheol was eternity’s waiting room,
says Daddy.

There, all souls waited for the
separated from their corpses,
 frozen motionless in graves.
When Christ arose,
Abraham’s offspring took their seats
at Heaven’s gold table.

 Then Sheol’s torched cage of the
hated changed to flames.
Unchosen souls awoke in their

They opened their eyes, exhausted, but couldn’t
lie on the burning ground.

For the Rich Man’s charred tongue, I drink:
pink night gowned next to the bathroom’s moon-soaked

I drink because the punished cannot.
I can still gulp streams from faucet to palms to lips, gulp life from
the plumbing—though
 I wonder in bed under my eyelids
if I too could be quick to slip, whisked down to the pit of
blistered souls.

Catherine Zickgraf

Today Irena De Filippou

Today, I saw a girl.
She looked really sad.
She got on the bus with her boyfriend, and got off two stops later.
She said goodbye to him when she got off.
He didn’t even acknowledge her.

Today, I saw a little boy with curly hair.
He smiled shyly at me before burying his face in his mother’s sweater.
Today, I spoke to a lady behind a counter.
She had a lot of eyeliner on, and it made her blue eyes stand out.
She’s already forgotten me.

Today, I sit at a table alone, finishing my dessert.
There are people around me, so many people.
I’m thinking about last weekend.
Today, I feel a lot of pain in my heart.
But I also feel numb.
Today is surreal, you see.
Like I’m not even here.
Today, I feel like dying, but I know I won’t.
I know I could never do that to the people who care about me.
But how I wish I didn’t care.

Today, my body will barely obey me.
 It takes far too long to do things.
I could barely clean the kitchen counter this morning.
And I am a clean freak.
Today, I think of all the things I would like to do, but can’t.
All the things I would like to clean. But I can’t.
 All the things I would like to say. But. I. Can’t.
Today, I would like to write you something.
An explanation. An apology.
But it’s difficult.

And if I did, would you read it?
Would you understand it?
Today, I’m remembering that moment
 I was frozen from the music,
but how my body kept moving.
Not even in time with the music.

My fingers were snapping.
Not even in time with the music.
Bodies were suffocating.
 Lights were blinding.
I lifted my arms when everyone else did, but I didn’t know why.
Today, I wonder if you can understand just how deeply consumed I was.
It wasn’t my choice to be,
and I tried to fight it. I did. I tried.
But my body kept moving in that awkward jig
 and while my mind went on overdrive,
 my mouth refused to open and use
the words I’d always been gifted with.

Happy feelings. That’s what I’d wanted.
I couldn’t breathe.

You told me I was annoying you.
 I felt the pain stab at my heart.
But I could do nothing.
Only stand there frozen, nodding my head and saying, “Okay.”

Okay to everything. Yes.
Yes. Yes, I understand.
No, I don’t know what I want. Okay.  I’m sorry.

Today, I remember the look on your face,
the anger in your eyes. My heart went cold, so cold.
Today, I think about how selfish we all really are.
And I am. I am selfish. I am.
So are you. But we give, sometimes.
 Only because some things are unachievable by ourselves,
 and we need people to help us.
And people will only help someone who’s willing to help them.
Today, I wonder if I’m making any sense.
I just want to sleep everything away.

Irena De Filippou

Home Alone © S.J Warner 2014.

Home Alone

He sat watching by remote
Via a security system that was bespoke
He had wondered what she would do
If left alone for a hour or two
He had left her frustrated
Only His passion sated

The morning before He had answered the call
Watching as her face became so appalled
So now He sat watching as she wondered the rooms
Could tell by her face that her frustration had bloomed
Into something much more

The wicked grin on her face said she would even the score
Watched as she entered His study
Running her hand over furniture with no hurry
Walking over to His favourite chair

It was then that He became completely aware
Of what she had planned
Her intent He did understand
As she slipped off the robe
Her beautiful flesh exposed

His body reacting
At what He knew was happening
Watching as she got comfortable
Legs draping thinking she was untouchable
He groaned with need to command
As He watched the trail of her hand

Caressing soft flesh
Her movements showing her passion for all things burlesque
Removing her pearls
She began to run and twirl
Them down her torso,
Her naked mound and her legs also
Leaving them laying over her legs
Pointing her toes as her body flexed
With sensations found

As her hand found her mound
He watched as she ground
Her fingers against the spot she had found
Writhing, gyrating
The pearls vibrating
As passion took a grip
And her honey began to drip
Onto the fine upholstery
Her actions He knew were retaliatory
His blood raced
Wanting to put her in her place
But when He watched as she shattered
All other thoughts no longer mattered
His little one had tried
And failed
The test that He had placed
And He could not wait to teach her once more His rules about mistakes
Still He sat watching by remote

Via a security system so bespoke
Waiting for the right moment
To punish her for her encroachment...
© S.J Warner 2014.

The Dance By Nicholas Foreman

The Dance
By Nicholas Foreman

The timbre floors echo the sound of your nostalgic chest as it’s close to mine.
You stare at my eyes through the mirrors on the walls.
Your hand loses its grip on my shoulder as if to wave goodbye.
I said I’d meet you at the hall but this tempo says I didn’t.
You’re skin is cold the warmth has gone your lips have hidden.
I can feel your twisted posture through your new torn dress.
This heart of mine has returned to my body as the air creeps between us,
Forgive me darling but how do we slow dance when I have burning lips?

Thursday, 24 July 2014

Poster war Dr. Michael (Dickel) Dekel

Poster war

What if they gave a war and nobody came?
—the poster reads. Too late. The invitations
engraved, have gone out; the RSVPs were sent;
the guests, always arriving dressed to kill.
The caterers insist that the show must go on.
The musicians composed their anthems.
The writers polished their prose to a sharp point.
And so the party begins, the blood pours
from the punch bowls, brains and entrails
serve as unappetizing appetizers. Fires burn
in every corner and soon the smoke covers
the last bits of truth. We hear each other
only distantly, we talk hesitantly or shout
hatefully. The dance of death strikes midnight,
the skull calling the steps. Children cry,
adults tremble with fear and righteousness,
each sure of being right, each afraid of being
wrong. What if they gave a war, and nobody
came? Too late. The engraved invitations
were welcomed, gathered in, tied with ribbons.

Dr. Michael (Dickel) Dekel
Bar Ilan University
Dept. of English Literature
HaKibbutzim College of Education
EAP and English Education Depts.

Poems for Peace in Palestine. Gene Barry

Poems for Peace in Palestine.
Travel Tickets On the day you kill me You'll find in my pocket
Travel tickets To peace,
To the fields and the rain, To people's conscience.
Don't waste the tickets. Samih al-Qasim
The Palestinian holocaust and the daily
murder of children, babies, mothers
and geriatrics etc in Gaza has to stop

This Thursday and Friday July 24th and 25th Blackwater Poetry is reserved for poems addressing the above. Two poems per member each day please.
Gene Barry

Thursday, 17 July 2014

Poetry Submissions/Competitions: RL POETRY AWARD 2014


Poets are the sense, philosophers­­ the intelligence­­ of humanity.” 
― Sam

306 entrants in 2013 with an average of 3 poems was an overwhelming response toward RL POETRY AWARD 2013. We realized how much an opportunity like that was awaited by our poets. Thus, here's the RL POETRY AWARD 2014.

We have a prestigious panel of Judges aboard. Poet Wang Ping who adjudicated the famous Griffin Poetry Prize 2013, has graciously consented to review all submissions personally in conjunction with the remaining jury members; Ranjit Hoskote, Jennifer Robertson and Veronica Golos.

We hope you are close to submitting an amazing manuscript of 5 poems (See Guidelines) as our deadline isn't very far away.  While experimentation is great if you know your stuff well, winning poems are often fresh and smooth in it's usage of imageries and offer a pleasant and unconventional storytelling. Having said so, one should never compromising with their poetic standards.

Rochelle Potkar, who was our 2013 shortlist poet made it to the notice of our honourable Judge Ranjit Hoskote with her incredible submission. Ever since, Rochelle is a regular invitee at every Mumbai poetry reading sessions curated by Ranjit Hoskote and other poet dignitaries.

This is one grand opportunity and you'll sure not like to miss this. Not everyone is poetically literate (read, write & understand). You are the blessed one. Make your blessing count.

1) Copy the clauses on a single MS-word file, print and sign it. Upload the file in PDF format.
2) Send a single MS-word file of min 3 to maximum 5 poems and upload.


Scripture, the Missing Verse ::.Darkness...

Scripture, the Missing Verse ::.

The life you live is wasted trying to survive,
you still find hatred
Why, a life, must be hated is because there's a missing verse in the scripture.
Earth's scripture,
the missing verse bleeds a soul without
hope of another tomorrow Life journeys a family
in chaos Without much to g
main innocent lives sleep in bane
It is not a matter of reduction at all,
but—perversely—of expansion, the aleatory
flutter of uncontrolled, metastatic
growth with teary eyed emotions colliding like planets
Worldly thoughts infiltrate the mind wind, fire,
trees and all riches combined
Can't put the mind to rest the missing verse,
in life's scripture feeds on the soul
Planets and galaxies are just minor formalities,
not a whole solvent
To fix the missing verse for betterment so as one begins
to slip and slide to the deepest of depths
A tongue of words, body of actions ran over
peaks Crevices and in mines...
Scripture, the missing verse,
still a want in life-lines.

By Poet Samcilla Baakojr

Poetry Submissions/Competitions: The Font - A Literary Journal for Language Teachers

The Font - A Literary Journal for Language Teachers, welcomes submissions of
high quality short stories, articles, essays, anecdotes, poems, cartoons and
other forms of creative writing or visual art which provide insight,
reflection, humour, and inspiration on the theme of language teaching or
learning, particularly teaching abroad. In other words, the theme must be in
some way related to language teaching or learning, or of interest to those
connected to this profession.
The deadline for the Fall 2014 Issue is August 30th.
Submissions may be sent to and should:
1. be original
2. be less than 5,000 words in length. (Poetry submissions should have no more than 3 poems.
Please include all poems in one document)
3. have a title, the author's name, affiliation, contact details, and word count at the
top of the first page (These details don’t necessarily appear in the journal.)
4. have any subheadings in bold font, no paragraph indentation, and *** between sections if
5. have any original photos or artwork attached as a separate file
6. be in English and sent by email
More information at

The Cost of Yellow by Michael Dickel (Israel)

The Cost of Yellow

I know there's a war going on,
but yellow flowers cover trees
in the parking lot as I pull in.
True, missiles shatter lives
while destroying buildings, but
fallen petals cover the tarmac
with a fairy-yellow glow. Yes,
sirens send us underground
while rocket's dread flares,
and these too crash
stupendously, but the
sea air waves a soft, humid
blanket spread out by
soothing breezes. So
easily I forget the price
of wind, the cost of yellow;
so hard to forget the lone
cry of a carrion crow
perched high in the tree
with sharp eyes turned
toward the horizon.

Dr. Michael (Dickel) Dekel
Bar Ilan University
Dept. of English Literature
HaKibbutzim College of Education
EAP and English Education Depts.

re-blogged from:

Thursday, 3 July 2014

Together Alone James WF Roberts

Together Alone
James WF Roberts
Tonight we sleep the sleep
of the heroic and the overly exhausted.
Too much on our minds, and we toss and turn together
but separated by the tyranny of distance and head space.
Soft embrace of the pillow
and the glowing body
under too many blankets,
hiding from the darkness
and the void, where shadows and memories
linger in the corners of perception.

The womb of night should hold no horrors
and be void of all known sorrows,
but our dreams are our thoughts and fears, desires
and hopes, given voice and self-awareness.

Tonight I sleep alone,
all the better after silly childish
phone conversations, two brilliant
travellers, travelling together alone
all at once.

Perhaps the road will lead us to where we need to be...