Monday, 3 January 2011


Neon Highway ISSN: 1476-9867

Issue 16


Note from Jane Marsh: pages 3-6

Eunice Ogunkoya: pages 7-8

Sam Smith: page 9

Kim Goldberg: pages10-11

Richard Asworth: page 12 (Collage)

Janet Currie: page: page 13

Carlos Nogueiras: pages 14- 15

Fergus Dick: pages 16-17

Kate Edwards: pages 18-20

Geoffrey Loe: pages 21-22

Steve Spence: pages 23-24

Dave Sealey: page 25

Jordan McMahon: pages 26-27

Simon Leake: pages 27-28

Henry Blake: pages 28-30

Ivor C Treby: pages 31-33

Phil Knight: pages 34-35

Austin Mc Carron: pages 36-37

Publications: pages 38-39

Sunscription: page 40

Front Cover and page 12. Artwork by the artist, Richard Ashworth.


June 2009

Jane Marsh

(Some thoughts on plastic surgery and achieving perfection)

I feel lately, I am getting older. I no longer gain the attention I once received as a younger woman. You discover many programmes these days about women having surgery, makeovers, implants and botox and god knows what else.

However, I do think, unless you have a real physical ailment it is not worth it. I also think that faces and bodies are a little like creating paintings and poems. There is that neverending desire to keep going, to try and improve, to make it better, to disect and to edit, to build and rebuild.

The only trouble is, that you can’t really do that with your face so easily. Have you ever noticed how people always want a bit more done to themselves? Even after they have had an important aspect rebuilt, such as the nose for instance! They are still not satisfied. I have an explanation for this and I think it is one of the reasons why many people get hooked onto this ridiculous obsession. It’s what I call the ‘Frankensteining’ of oneself, the obsessional need to re-create, of taking control and re-building the body. If all goes wrong, of course, we are dissatisfied. Even if it is fine, we then become what I call ‘Phantom of the opera’. We hide away, can’t face ourselves, don’t want to go out, fall into self- hate which is something similar to what we had in the first place before we ‘frankensteined’ ourselves and therefore we are capable of becoming compulsive in our desire to change the way we look.

So why do I disagree with these changes? I feel it is how we are taught to look at ourselves and we need to get beyond this ‘frankensteining’ and instead look at the beauty within ourselves that exists already that needs to come out instead of being hidden or changed. Why cover a flower in spray paint if it is a beautiful flower already?

There are similarities to painting and poetry. For instance, if you put red into a painting it will need to be balanced out with other colours to make it the right amount and to give it the right harmony and composition in the overall painting and the same with words, if you add a word into a poem that seems harsh for instance or sounds odd to the ear, you may want to balance it out with other sounds to emphasise the language you are using. The great thing is of course that you do at least have the opportunity to change things, but this isn’t so easy with physical selves. So, when a person has their nose changed, for instance, they will be excited and may think that once the nose is changed, that they will look ‘prettier’ or ‘better’ in some way. But it is all relative. You could look prettier or worse depending on the rest of your face.

For instance, you have now had your operation. Although the nose is now what you always wanted, unfortuntaly it has now inadversedly changed the width of your cheekbones and has now set the face offbalance in a certain way as to distract from what were previously some of your better features, for instance the eyes or the mouth. So now, you may be thinking about or needing to have another job done to raise your eyes, to make them more slanted or something done to your mouth to compensate for your new nose.

I often want to say to celebrities. Leave yourself alone! What they seem to forget and miss out on, is that the features we all have are all in harmony with our other features so if you change something, then it will automatically make the other features change also, so you have to realise that your one change will affect everything as a whole, as a result of one simple aspect changing. It won’t just be the one feature that will change. I can understand of course that sometimes there is a feelgood factor to all of this and that sometimes it is necessary to change in order to benefit more confidence but only if necessary...please!

Also, another piece of advice. Don’t think that by having a feature from a famous person will necessarily make you look like that person or even change you greatly. I will give you an example. Imagine you are looking at a painting of the great Mona Lisa and you decide to give her a different nose, and you want her to have a cute little nose. Let’s try it. Let us give her Reese Witherspoon’s nose as below.

Example 1.

The question is, even if we like this better, what is the point? It looked okay in the first place and is this nose on this face really any better? She looks different but not amazing and basically this nose looks better on the face of Reese Witherspoon because it goes in harmony with the other features of Reese. Now imagine that it wasn’t Reese Witherspoon’s nose that you wanted and instead it was your idol, Kate Winslet’s nose and you think if you give Mona Lisa, Kate Winslet’s nose then everything will be amazing and she will forever look just like Kate Winslet. So lets give it a go.

Example 2.

Here is the face of the Mona Lisa with Kate Winslet’s nose.

As you can see it looks surprisingly identical to the original Mona Lisa nose. Therfore this just goes to prove that by using the nose of the person you feel most attached to, for instance, Kate Winslet, doesn’t necessarily mean that you will end up looking much different than you did in the first place.

I hope you have enjoyed Jane Marshe’s beauty therapy advice and learnt that you are also a unique masterpiece and like the Mona Lisa you should not be tampered with because as you can see we can go on forvever finding the right nose and never be satisfied, so why not keep it as it was originally? A beautiful nose in its own right as the Mona Lisa has proved over many

All the very best.

Jane Marsh.

Eunice Ogunkoya


Whilst waiting for life to begin at forty

As her first-born child approaches adulthood

She imagines what it would be like

To be stuck at the age of sixteen

Not yet an adult

But no longer a child.

Being a caring mother

And at the big crossroad of life

She wonders whether he would rather be

Like Jack and the Beanstalk

Or like Peter Pan in Neverland

He's trying ever so hard

To fulfill all the hopes of achievement

Being expected of him

But yet he's got to make major decisions

About whether or not to strive

To join the race to lose virginity

To take up a human vice

To aim for an ASBO award.

And what about responsibilities?

Old enough for some

Too young for others

Who should decide?

Perhaps he should

He's ever so fearless

Unlike good old-cautious she.

She imagines how he must feel

What with all the peer pressure

And that from her

It must be ever so confusing

Being stuck in the middle

Especially with her in limbo too.

They both deserve some respite and rescue

From this precarious position

In the halfway house of hope

By means of the magnet of salvation

And the alarm clock,

To avoid being suck in a moment in time.


Reflecting light rays from a concrete plane

Of silvered glass

Disclosing desires and dislikes

With clear-cut images

This is the mirror that cancels mirk.

Reflecting light rays from a visual plane

Of heated air

Distorting delusions and distress

With glimpses of water

This is the mirage that causes mire.

Reflecting light rays from abstract planes

Of thoughtful minds

Discerning dreams and dispelling doubts

With true brillant outcomes

These are miracles that create mirth.

Sam Smith


The grief that bursts in a blasting out

shout of despair, whole of the torso

bone-racked and rocking;

and goes on

for one long, sore-eyed waking is, all told

probably the best cure for such loss.

A death greeted with instant numbness

that looks on, is composed, equally still....

And yet grief has snuck in, has become

a blister ready to be popped, lies

in wait for another loss, trivial maybe....

a broken toy?

a missed appointment?

and then the snot-spluttering howl,

bystanders looking to one another puzzled.


....hero herein heroin .... searching by means of mental mirrors for some mislaid idea — pearls are dried oyster spit? — such a self-appointed task can still be a binding act that does not allow time or mind-space for self-wonder .... in a shut-in life, unpeopled and uneventful, early evening comes up against the barrier, an awareness of yet unspent time, hectare after hectare of grey terrain to be crossed, and with the tired brain unable to offer any distraction, the only company this hollow muscular sac, the heart; and in the beckoning distance absence in sleep....

Crown of Thorns

Kim Goldberg

the sperm of

jesus christ is believed to be

a snail

a hermaphrodite

will swoop and dive in unison

by certain schools of devout christians

the snails sex life

as well as some atheists

is unbelievably complicated to start with

the evidence offered includes

they are hermaphrodites each possessing a vagina and

the virgin birth since high school biology

two penises

tells us this can only lead to


two X chromosomes

can take up to twelve hours

the position is further supported by much

which is understandable

early medieval art depicting

the foreplay involves firing

jesus as a woman

solid (and often lethal)

complete with breasts suggesting


the true reason they all came

into each others bodies

to behold

(Assembled from Worlds Within Worlds microbiology textbook

and blog postings about Jesus)

* * *

The Breaking of Waves


as wave, as borderless boundarygone

toptorn wave Cast


from shorn

sea, from wonderless stupefied

uniform sea Left to


the beach

the forsaken legless genreless

beach The


wave, taking

not shape not precision not scissors

to cloth The naked


when fundamentals

fall away, when spent thought lies

splayed In tall


vacant as

shotguns, vanished as brainstems

writ In wet sand


banished, clamped

as bass jaw, upswept as gulls, shunned

staked Unflocked



the rolling wave, the locating wave, the unshapable

wave The

unbroken wave

* * *

Janet Currie







I ?????


L is protest poetry












Carlos Nogueiras

Childish Dreams

A phoney ceiling in the sky, like a sheet of greyness

To dampen her childish dreams of big city lights.

The men she slept with for money always wore cheap

Suits, travelling salesmen with ordinary families, car

Payments and mortgages to trouble their minds, men

Who often discovered something new and profoundly

Liberating buried between her thighs: A momentary

Escape from the rat race, a quick release from the

Tyranny of life, and she was making money, plenty of

Money, and saving it for a rainy day which glistened

In the distance on the edge of nowhere, like one

Of her clients, fully satisfied with her willingness

To please, yet muttering to himself obscene words

Pregnant with the mystery of a foreign tongue.

Maldito River

Her body sunk in the Maldito River,

Floating there peacefully unclaimed,

Enticing the bloodsuckers thirsty

For the scent of redness under

Warm inviting skin, a gang of black

Scabs clung to shivering flesh,

She would have to burn those off

Applying the healing power of

A match, a task assigned

To an angelic stranger who pulled

Her out of water, and thus

Voluntarily assumed the role of

Saviour by holding her down as

He plucked the evildoers off her

Body with his bare hands.

She squirmed and winced for

The pain was intense, then offered

Herself to him- who shook his

Head and mutely declined, walking

Away with a trace of regret

Painted in his dark vigilant eyes.

Fergus Dick


There’s a hole the size of a bath tub in

The middle of the carriageway at the

Crossing of Cedars Road and Long Road.

Where on rushed winter mornings a cyclist

May jump the lights with desperation

In fear of imminent observation

By men from Offsted in cream silk cravats.

And Clapham Common snorts away to port

With distant dogs of no particular sort.

The trunk road exhibits this chasm

Leaving queuing white van men in spasm,

As they rev their utes in growing folly

Scared of missing Grandma Lerner’s lolly

She’ll spread the loot to other worthy guys

Who weren’t so startling blown by surprise

Who didn’t dip their 1990 chassis

Cold steel crunch in the crucial thoroughfare

London to Guildford via Wandsworth.

Fergus Dick

the Death of the Supermarket

When Tescoe and Sainsbury

are old-fashioned

when the bright young branch manager

looks back on the boom

from his retirement home in Henley

I hope he knows how many blows

to the chin and gut

of so many valuable things

he struck

with his re-arrangement of the store.

Kate Edwards

Deep Night Loving.

There was a time,

lying in deep grass

under a melting moon.

you, kissing my lips,

kissing my pale skin,

all set fair, love forever,

lying always each on each,

body on body, mind on mind,

such longing, such passion,

flesh seeking flesh,

sweat mixing with sweat,

bodies fitting, joining,

rising to a sudden ecstasy,

the collapse into satiety,

limbs tangled, enfeebled,

murmers of enduring love,

of everlasting desire.

Why did the night suddenly seem colder,

the moon glide, hiding behind a cloud?

A Small Adventure.

Out of the door,

along the lane

scented with shrubs,

white candles

lighting the chestnuts,

torches in the night.

I run through streets,

houses with tidy gardens,

moon-paled azaleas,

star-spiked magnolia.

I reach the track

to the wild wood,

I find a place to lie,

a soft and fern strewn hollow,

a deep earth smell.

Branches shelter above,

night air caressing me,

I lie back, watching

the revolving universe.

The moon is thin,

the stars are far apart,

lanterns in vacancy.

A heavy rustling

disturbs the dark

beyond my shelter,

startled I swiftly rise,

running back to the streets,

to lights, to safety.

It was

a small adventure

perfumed by the night.


‘Can’t we still be friends…’


after a short, disjointed conversation in which

you told me nothing after your first words,

‘I ‘m out of it.’

Out of this situation, you meant, out of this affair,

this erotic kinship

this body on body,

this mind on mind,

now revealed for the illusion it was. A quote

hazed in my head, ‘I have been so deceived.’

A week I had waited for you, dressed and perfumed,

each night watching the dusk fail, an indigo sky

robbing the trees of colour. Another drink,

a hand reaching for the phone, then retreating,

a book unread, thrown careless on the floor,

the scent of Rive Gauche on my skin

sickening me. Thinking every minute, every moment

I would hear your car, your footsteps.

Now this.

A broken voice on the line, almost sobbing.

‘Don’t pretend to be upset!’ I hissed, ‘it is you

who is ending it. All I want to know is why,

tell me why, I’ll ask no more, but tell me why.’

You couldn’t or wouldn’t. You left me empty,

no reasons, no excuses, no explanations, just

those foolish words repeated, ‘Can’t we still be friends.’

‘Don’t be so stupid,’ I shouted, banging down the phone

and staring through a window at a world turned bleak,

turned grey and ordinary, the shining gone, gone

with the deep night longing, the searching, the joining,

mouth on mouth, part to part, compelling fusion.

I never did discover why you wanted this no longer.

Geoffrey Loe


The prostitutes move inland on Christmas Day

to stalk solitary men like seagulls in

a boat’s wake. Their unfamiliar words

just aggravate until ‘darling’ restrains.

Where the dirt of boredom’s trodden on,

this square could be a prison yard, sky-high

with cameras. That man’s spun a yarn but looks

as though it’s canteen day. ‘Come on, sweetheart.’

Later, his mind will take him down the block,

investigate his ruin. While shopping

explodes in climax at the till, he should

have waited for the sales. He’d know nothing.

But won’t be content, if adverts arouse

him still. They leave you feeling you’re one short

of a six-pack, a sandwhich from a picnic.

He’s seen Bangkok to leer in Heathrow’s squall

and might say it’s just like wanking-robbing,

though, seems more honest as it quietly meets

the needs of kleptomaniacs and the poor,

who know the jingle: If the alarm sounds, run.


Shot, I staggered to one wall, another,

Eyes all disbelief, guts hanging out.

My pulse was racing to a finish.

I would die in a minute. I would die.

The world stopped spinning in the corner, but

I was a boxer on the referee’s shoulder:

Legs jelly, arms like lead; bricks blurred and then

My throat filled up with anger. Looking down

The puddled alley, the most beautiful

Girl I ever knew, said, ‘Sorry,’ Tottering

To her, I fell among the dustbins. Bitch.

My breath unsteady, clouds enclosed the moon.

Steve Spence

Slowed down, it’s a performance full of grace

As I watched her gazing out past the other boats

in the bay, I heard the pirate whisper in her ear.

“This week we’re going to look skywards & marvel

at the mystery of clouds”. His early works have

that tinge of melancholic wit, a comical mismatch

between the banal & the sublime, yet as the

economic slowdown starts to bite, are we seeing

a backlash against green policies? There was a

full moon the night I moved in & it literally filled

the room. When a butterfly leaves the safety of

its cocoon, does it realise how beautiful it has

become? Here, on the other side of the island,

the view is entirely different, yet the interior of the

ship is decorated in a similar pastiche baroque style.

It has been suggested that strobe lighting is an

optional extra.

Every time a flare rose up towards the sky,

the figure of a pirate stood out plainly against the

dark background. There is a great variety of fauna

on the island, including several comparatively

rare species. This week we’re going to look skywards

& marvel at the mystery of clouds. People in the

street can be incredibly aggressive but it’s easy to

lose the nuthatch’s song in the middle of a woodland

chorus. Alice was as interested in man-made clouds

as in the natural variety, yet choosing your aperture

or what you want in-focus, helps define your role as

a photographer. She hesitated & the stranger caught

her by the throat again. As waves swept the decks &

guns broke adrift, they made their way towards the

jutting spit of land at the tip of the crescent of sand.

Strobe lighting is an optional extra.

Last night I met draco, the pirate who modelled for

Salvador Dali. Soon I was surrounded by dancing

buccaneers, armed with pistols & cutlasses, yet

the terror of waking up in an alien world has never

been more eloquently expressed. Suddenly, there

was a loud bang in the parlour & I hurried in to behold

the captain lying full-length upon the floor. It was not

Alice who hesitated but the man whose authority had

brought her here. He was finicky & fastidious, with

a dandy’s taste in waistcoats. How she longed to get

out of that dark, sunless cabin & wander around

among those beds of bright flowers. Yet she shifts

from one persona to another with a change of hat

& a drop in her voice. Her face flushed slightly, like

a glacier at sunrise & there was a rustling of dresses

as the cries of her rapture roused me from my reverie.

Dave Sealey

The Never-ending Economy

“Queue Here” reads the sign

underneath the old railway bridge.

An arrow points towards the wall

networked with ivy tracing mortar-

the road map of the industrial age

in dark green with white flecked veins.

The line begins to form, men and women

in polyester uniforms and crumpled suits,

virgins to hand-outs clutch at tickets-

early birds to an imaginary worm.

Eventually they begin to die, they fall

at the wayside and lose their place.

“Someone should be on the way” they moan.

Imaginary bankers walk amongst them

nudging out pockets into invisible sacks,

grimly extracting their pounds of flesh.

Jordan McMahon

-The Life We Love-

Bleary eyed yet so alive we?re on the road again.

Cursing, screaming, drunk we?re dreaming,

The clock shows 10am.

The familiar haze of excessive days

Subsides and gives way.

Look around, the sights and sounds

They?re ours just for today.

But we have no future, we have no time

No hope or destiny.

Let us wallow in such pleasures,

Let us create some history.

I am Icarus, you see these snow covered wings?

See me choking and drowning on whole manners of things?

Coughing, laughing and crying inside,

Lamenting the child inside which died.

Four to three, three to two and now remains just one.

A delusional world is where this soul has gone.

A place of opportunity, wonder and awe,

A world where the soul is left screaming for more.

More and more, feed it in, I have quite an appetite.

Malcontented and indecisive, its always may or might.

Never planned yet here I stand, living for another day.

Living to wander, living to explore, see whose to meet on the way.

There?s love in the sky today, faces in the clouds,

Embracing as the sun intoxicates those dreaming crowds.

This is the life, the life we do love,

In a field on our backs watching the spectacle above.

Stay here forever, let the earth drag us all down,

Yet before us awaits the neon glow of our dear town.

As the night descends on our beloved friends we?ll take to the city streets,

Burn away time with beer and wine tapping feet to the box fresh beats.

A sense of unity, a sense of belonging, the town is ours tonight.

Rub your eyes look to the skies and beam with ecstatic delight.

Remember laughs and jokes, drinks and smokes, girls left behind,

One things clear, when you were near, I should have kissed you by the waterside.

Oh how suddenly you did change, it hit me like a freight train.

Blood on the dance floor, blood on my sleeve, blood on everything I perceive.

Smoke in their face, tears in their souls, take their hands for they have lost control.

Throw a bottle to show your pain,

Live to wake up and do it over again.

Again and again,

Over and over,

Its always the same,

Swinging from freedom to restrain.

Broken hearts and forgotten truths, such a shame about those hopeful youths.

As the sun sets or rises or whatever you desire.

You?ll find yourself teary eyed far from alive,

For flying too close to the fire.

Simon Leake

up, rising

up, rising

a quiet day


streets unused

no bird calls

not even the gulls

gone away to sea to spawn

where small groups gather

stories albeit fantasies

with their bearings in reality

are confided in disconsolate strangers

and friends exchange bitchyness

others gone off to Japan,

Canada, Timbuktu…

Bristol, Spring 2008

Taking Breath

Sunday mornings

Hertford street

sat in the window

smoking weed

reading the paper

drinking tea

Sunday mornings

Hertford street

quiet, slow,

easy, changing

new deeper feelings

undercurrents, felt beats

Sunday mornings

Hertford street

watching the Sun fall behind

the opposite side of the street

one year out of thirty

never to repeat

Henry Blake


It hangs in my skull.....

A Gustav Klimt in the Louvre.



My depression is dedicated to me

She comes completely free.

She drives me everywhere I wish to go....

One day she will drive me straight to the

Cemetary without turning left at the lights.



I am a very dull man....

I do not speak much and when I do it is not worth repeating.

I hide behind my self imposed exile.

Sometimes I cry with incomprehension of self.

I am a zero man....

You people are my superiors

You breath, smile converse with great ease!

I could never be like you.

Give me love and I will turn it into ugliness

Give me hope I will turn it into despair

I expect nothing,

That is what I receive




I walk into darkness with my atonality.


A gang of girls sat in the corner of the pub

With lager tops and dreams of passion, love.

Bobby, Darren, Steve and Gary laughing at the bar.

Bouncer approaches:

“keep the noise down, lads”

“piss off cannon ball head”

A punch straight to the jaw, broken teeth,

Flying glass, a fractured cheek bone,

A kick to the spleen.

Flashing lights, cops arrive to instigate law and order,

Bust a few skulls.

Darren, Steve, Gary are thrown into the back of a van....

Taken to station for photographs, bed and breakfast.

Poor Bobby was taken to A.N.E with severe lacerations to the


The girls left the pub, walked up through the town centre.

No sexual intercourse tonight.

Chicken and chips will have to suffice.

Ivor C Treby

A cut-glass English accent

I heard this day relate

how she and a companion

had walked down to the Tate,

and there they saw a canvas

in sapphire blue and rose

(the artist is not famous,

a name that no one knows).

This painting with some others

had chanced to catch her eye,

it was, she said, so charming

it made her want to cry;

I could not help but listen,

so cold her voice, so loud,

there in a racking Tube train

it reached me through the crowd.

I marvelled that the artist

in hunger, cold and pain,

should spark this sudden insight,

had laboured not in vain:

no other person heard her

alone with their desires

their heads yet bowed and nodded,

their ears all filled with wires.

Ivor C Treby

The Shearing

That day we all went down to

Derrington. The air once filled

with morning birdsong,calling

waterbirds and finches, now

quite silent, in the unstarred

sky a wide wan opal sun.

Our breath hung iced in fog so

cold it was, crossing the fields

along the old Roman road.

And slowly as the trees broke

up in silver, all those things

the young men thought

they knew, those things

the old men dared not know,

were instant and apparent

We stood upon the fracture

looking out into that great

circumference, treading the

gold and blue diameters

dropping beneath our feet.

About us glowed the envelope

of bright pencilled lines, far

in the frosted sky, long firefly

shoals of starships. And suddenly

we all were running, shouting,

laughing like madmen, climbing

the gliding plates, the tipped

receding planes, the gleaming

comices, the rocking cliffs and

shifting floors. Blinded by flickering

light, the wreathing mist, most

of us soon slipped and plunged

headlong, while others cried out,

wildly jumped and fell. Some raved,

dropped to their knees in prayer.

But none of us that I could see

rejoiced, though several wept.

Polydeoxyribonucleotides rule ok

Aggressive . . . . . all elbows from the starT

This molecule presaged trouble . . . . . . . A

Gorgon tendril . . . . twin-coiled and maniC

Geared for harm . . . beyond the solar disC

Cosmic rays . . . . . . sparked an awakeninG

That triggered . . . . . . . . . a terrible cobrA

Chaos held no hurt . . . . . . . this orderinG

Could only lead to disaster . . . . . . . . lonG

Attaining (slime cell mollusc man) . . . buT

Certain . . . so at once it was war . . . biG

Guns. . . knives. . . axes . . . fusions nucleiC

And all without soul . . . no chance of thaT

Ghost in the machine . . . . blind dynastiC

Greed set species against species . . . . . siC

Transit all flesh . . . . . . . . ape or amoebA

As for good, evil . . . who’d have thoughT

There was no choice? . . through milleniA

Conquest . . . by shortfall and winnowinG

This snake’s more original sin . . . . . . seA

To land to air to space . . . . . . . . . gangliA

Conjured a mind to dream right and wronG

All things . . . . . . . . wavicle to astronauT

Amoral . . . . . . callous . . . . . . indifferenT

God is not . . . . was never . . . . just havoC

Phil Knight


I am an ordinary man

a family man in fact.

You would not look at me

twice if you saw me in

the market or on the bus.

I work regular hours,

my Supervisor says I am

A Information Facilitator

I like that, it much better

then somethings I have been


I work with three other men

they are great guys

you would like them if

you met them outside of work.

We have breakfast together

every morning and we chat about

our wives or last night’s telly,

that’s the real highlight of my day.

Then it’s back to the grindstone.

We go to the Supervisor’s

office and he assigns us

a subject for the day.

First we get the room straight,

I set out the equipment on

a little table. Sometimes

all the subject needs is a

glimpse of that little table

and they melt like butter

that’s a good day.

They always feel better

after talking, yes they do

even if we have to go a bit

further or even a lot further

in the end they always feel

better because people are

basically good and they don’t

want bad things to happen.

But there are hard days when

a subject will just not talk.

So I have to go to the little

table and chose something

a pliers, a belt, a scalper or

the box of electrodes.

But for my money a bucket of water

works best, it’s so simple

people have a natural fear of

drowning and I like to think

the cleaners are grateful

when it is only water they mop up.

I can hear my colleagues coming

so is there anything I can get you

the choice is yours.


















Austin Mc Carron

Divine Cities

Divine cities obliterate the silence

grey words sing.


with a chronic grief the stars meddle.

Foolish fingers count the notes left by

singers in a mechanical store.

Streets of music offer to carry the burden

of sound.

Tormented orchestras with stolen scores

play to a deserted crowd

with instruments of sun and lights of blood.

Fundamental Gods smell out the lyrics with

Impassioned glances and grave unlit smiles.


Through streets of gold affliction

we march on fire.

Holding our torches high we write

on the walls

of truth our life of burning secrets.

We smell innocence and ash.

Primitive shadows


us like trickles of forbidden water.

Springing from nowhere,

newly discovered

flames resist our anguished warnings.

Numinous black tongues lash our burnt

faces with the smell of retreating forces,

the diseased

breath of all our smouldering languages.


On green streets, blue light,

with swollen voices, aching

to speak. Fugitive plants hide

out in torn gardens until the

colours see. Deaf music plays

to a group of strangers with

broken tongues and concrete feet.

Famous languages fall silent with

murderous sounds and dark potions

in cold rooms. Exhausted windows

reflect all that is sunny and lost.

Great territories, filled with sand,

Speak with pictures of fallen eyes.

Dip into this selection of interesting new poetry books and publications.



‘The Year of Not Dancing’

Blackstaff Press, Belfast.




The Year of Not Dancing by C.L. Dallat is a vivid journey into the past. Events unfold to reveal a fascinating story, the viewpoint sometimes taken from that of a child’s, leading the reader back to once familiar territory; the child’s world versus that of the adult world.

The poems read quickly, images and rhythms clipping the tongue and memory, like an old film flickering on the screen. In the poem ‘Lives of the Composers’ the words are beautifully crafted:

Partly the Doric flourish soda- bar chrome

of the Rock-Ola in Joe’s Carousel pavilion –

Dallat uses a musical and unaffected language.

A fascinating read.Thoroughly enjoyed this collection.

Jane Marsh


William Bedford

‘Collecting Bottle Tops’

Selected Poems 1960-2008

Poetry Salzburg

ISBN: 978-3-901993-27-5

Entirely New

Writing produced under

The Canterbury Laureate

Programme 2007-2009

Edited by Patrica Debney

Published 2008: Canterbury City Council. or

The Purpose of Your Visit

River Wolton

Smith/Doorstop Books

The Poetry Business, Bank St Arts, 32-40 Bank St. Sheffield. S1 2DS

ISBN: 978-1-906613-05-1

The Second Fifty


Jenefer Ann Murray

Palores Publications’ 21st Century Writers

ISBN 978-0-9556682-7-2

ORB Editions

Avant-garde poetry

PO Box 35 Bangor, Gwynedd LL57 3ZF


Steve Sneyd

Mistaking the Nature of Posthuman

Hilltop Press

4 Nowell Place


Huddersfield, HD5 8PB, England

ISBN 978-0-905262-42-0

Hilltop press titles are distributed overseas by BBR/NSFA

The McLellan Poetry Award 2009

For poems in Scots and English.

Enter online:

Closing date: 31st July 2009


Neon Highway, the magazine for innovative poetry.

Submissions to be sent to the editor:

Alice Lenkiewicz: 37, Grinshill Close, Liverpool, L8 8LD

Email submissions can be sent to:

Or send via snailmail to address above. Please always supply a sae for any returned material.

Neon Highway is available bi-annually, with 2 issues costing £5.50, or a single

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Please be patient on replies.

If you do not hear about your work within eight weeks, do please contact the editor.

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