Author: North of Oxford

A journal of book reviews, commentary, essays and poetry.

Erik Moore Variations by Michael Paul Hogan

baobab (3)[6]

a storm in the city

and the world is fine

one day we’ll touch

(the) girl in blue

(and) journey to the upside down tree
.

sunny by a lake

save me from myself

petrified

and the clouds just keep on rolling

*

a storm in the city

petrified /

         (the) girl in blue
.

& jour/

      ney) upsid/

               own

.

e) t
r
ee
.

the clouds they jus keep rollin

rollin/

and the world
is fin (is
       fine)

*

under a lamp-post

          Wardour Street

a cigarette /
                                 a match

.

k-k-k-k-k-k-shh FLARE
.
a plume of smoke
.
the girl in blue) sings –
.

In Soho Square in Soho Town 

A boy will touch me silently 

Under the tree the upside down 

In Soho from myself save me.

 I am the girl, the girl in blue

One day we’ll touch in Soho Town. 

The streets are paved with cigarettes 

And the clouds keep rolling down.

*

save me from my/self!

(petrified)

a storm in the city /

                 city blue

& the clouds ) a cigarette

a telephone kiosk Soho Square

and the clouds the clouds keep

rolling

       rolling

rolling ) to the

             upside down tree

*

a storm in the city

and the world is fine

one day we’ll touch

(the) girl in blue

(and) journey to the upside down tree

sunny by a lake

save me from myself

(petrified!)

and the clouds just keep on rolling

                             rolling!

rolling to the upside down tree
.

FIN

.
Born in the countryside west of London, Erik Moore is a multi-instrumentalist whose life-long curiosity with music, sound, and the human condition has led him to the conclusion that the most important thing in life is to be content. His vinyl album Journey to the Upside Down Tree, in collaboration with Annabella Maneljuk, hopefully describes his view of the world.
.
hogan
Born in London, Michael Paul Hogan is a poet, journalist and fiction writer whose work has appeared extensively in the USA, UK, India and China. He is the author of six collections of poetry, the most recent of which, Chinese Bolero, with illustrations by the great contemporary painter Li Bin, was published in 2015.
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Strings by Caleb Coy Guard

strings
.
Strings
.
I so love the look and sound of a banjo. Vibrant,
On its feet, like a flatfooter, perfect and resonant.
The guitar has the aspect of an echo.
This song has the aspect of an echo.
.
The banjo is daylight, more than the absence
Of dark, different from the restlessness of night.
The strings of evening are the guitar.
The guitar is restless, like a dream.
.
And between them, the gift of dawn and dusk,
The ukulele strings jump like madrigals in the
Foam between wave and shoreline. A modest
Lute, the ukulele, aspect of crying, of laughing.

.

coy

Currently a freelance editor, Caleb Coy Guard has a Masters in English from Virginia Tech. His work has appeared in The Common, Streetlight, and Stonecoast Review.

2 Poems by Elizabeth Jane Timms

trunk
.
A Trunk of Old Letters
 .
In the attic lay the black leather trunk, like a casket
For the letters that lay forgotten.
And opening it, I heard a crowd of mingled voices,
Young and old – ladies and gentlemen, children and grandmothers
All talking at once in voices of joy, sorrow and hope.
All reading aloud their long ago written words,
Alive in a world when the ink was still wet,
When the seal was not yet dry,
When the quill was just set down upon the desk.
They belonged to that world, they leapt over the puddles of candle wax
Upon the pages – chattered on about the births of children,
The advent of the new century, the last Christmas and the new carriage.
They were owned by the world of letters.
.
On Rome
 .
I did fly like a gray dove over the immortal roofs of Rome,
As my imagination leapt from chapels to churches,
Across streets and squares to roost upon an ancient pillar –
The Roman sunlight touched me in the red mist of morning,
And I became instantly old –
Looking at the city then, I turned to stone.
Into a statue to stand forever with my eyes fixed on this place.
I shall leap then across Rome from pillar to pillar,
From dome to dome.
Night filled the ancient sites then,
And the shadows of your centurions
Marched victorious under your arches in the moonlight,
And the Forum’s scattered pillars
Lay like the abandoned bones of its Caesars.
.
timms
Elizabeth Jane Timms is a royal historian, freelance writer, research professional and poet, based in Oxford. She is a member of the Oxford Writers’ Circle and the University of Oxford Poetry Society. She writes for journals, magazines, newsletters and the web. She divides her time between Oxford and London.

leather jacket in the sun by Tohm Bakelas

slump
.
leather jacket in the sun
.
he was hunched over his steering wheel
when they pulled his body from the car
it was about 9am
on the last saturday
in october heat
rigor mortis had set in
they attempted to conceal his body
with a white sheet
but they couldn’t seem to get it right
his body was contorted
like a dog begging for scraps
somehow they failed to cover him
what i remember most
was the look on his face
a dull yellow drained pink
empty and unbroken
his hair was a mess
greased and blown back
and his black leather jacket
shined in the sun
.
tohmoutside

Tohm Bakelas is a social worker in a psychiatric hospital. He was born in New Jersey, resides there, and will die there. His poems have appeared in numerous journals, zines, and online publications. He has published four chapbooks “Orphan Crows” (Analog Submission Press, July 2018), “Destroy My Wound” (Budget Press, August 2018), “In Living Rooms” (Iron Lung Press, November 2018), “Decaying Sun Under Noontime Rain” (Analog Submission Press, February 2019) and a microchapbook “We All Arrive” (Origami Poems Project, October 2018). https://tohmbakelaspoetry.wordpress.com

A Man Like Her Father By David Boski

whisky

A Man Like Her Father 

.
“I want you to stop drinking whiskey;
it changes you, you turn into a monster,
and I don’t want to date a man like my father”
she said as her eyes began to water.
.
“Ok” I said, “I’ll keep it under control.”
.
“No David, you won’t keep it under control;
that’s the point, you lose control; do you know
all the awful things you said to me last night?
do you know what my father would think?
my brother? my sister? or my mother?
if I told them? — they wouldn’t let me date you!”
she continued assertively.
.
“I’m sure your mother’s heard much worse
from your father” I replied defensively,
yet speaking truthfully.
.
“Well, that’s the thing, I don’t want to hear it” she said.
.
A few short months later our relationship ended:
she moved on and married a man who
cheated on her: a man like her father.
.
boski
.
.
David Boski lives in Toronto. His poems have appeared in The Dope Fiend Daily, Under The Bleachers, Mad Swirl, The Rye Whiskey Review and elsewhere. His forthcoming chapbook “Fist Fight and Fornication” is being released by John D. Robinson’s Holy&intoxicated Publications in June.

Call For Submissions – The Plum Tree Tavern

plum tree

Plum Tree Tavern invites original and previously unpublished poetry reflecting themes of nature, environment and ecology. Please submit seasonal work: in season.Works of up to 24 lines sounds about right. Longer works of eco-poetry will also be considered, especially of witness, testimony and protest.

Work that focuses on the image in nature as it exists is greatly preferred over the writer’s judgments of the image. Except in connection with farming and working the land, Plum Tree is little interested in poems that focus on human activity or human nature. No attachments, except by prior arrangement.

View complete guidelines and how to submit at: https://theplumtreetavern.blogspot.com/

CIRQUE DE LA LUNE -The creative genius that is Hayden Wayne

© by Hayden Wayne

It’s a circus oratorio in two acts

This is not a “book/musical” show. This is a circus of music, dance, song and clowning, an allegorical tale of a man telling the story of his own life through a series of component acts in circus metaphor, somewhat like an Aesop’s fables.

Hayden Wayne, author singing at the piano, the Trio: Rhiannon Parsaca (in red), Leah Siegal (in yellow), Kelly Ellenwood (in black), Michael Bonanno as The Boy, Rowan Parsaca as The Kid. Rhiannon, Leah & Michael were nineteen during this performance. Rowan was thirteen.

Act One

Act Two

.

You can visit Hayden Wayne at : http://haydenwayne.com/