never before in the field of human
sounds in the mud have we been bought
so completely not battlefields as such
but where every beat has its generation
and every generation has been beaten
into crushed ants crushed beetles
ground down and mixed
with alcohol or diamorphine
blurred into believing
we’d everything we could’ve wanted
we’d carried  flags beautifully
allowed the cloth and colours
to engage in conversation with the wind
had the art had the moves and the Es
and a wrist action which was exactly
what we expected it to be
i’m not sick because
i’m not a non violent soldier
or a d-i-y theologian
peace is only a by-product of war
it comes with guns and the theft
of freedom buys iPhones or plasma TVs
the digital revolution is insecticide
and we are dead creatures
with more legs than brain cells


we are the dinosaurs of the future our
history compressed into rock gods singing
rock ‘n’ roll songs of the mediaeval
dead until the cult of the censor ceremonially
cut them to shreds
in the church of god shit politics
selling t-shirts by the ton to look cool
and hot to be
courted at the masque ball
the loneliness of the pen
bled words dyed pillar box red
carved by swords
for boob jobs and liposuction and tidy
piss flaps that don’t go back home to the bone
fossilise undetected
writing pussy riot on your skin
is not a sin
the sin is
not to kill the layers and the liars
‘cos i know why the caged guitar
can’t sing



i’m the man who grew
a moustache but lost an arm
don’t hold a grudge though as i
get a seat on the tube without my
duel personality engaging in
extra loud
heated philosophical debates
which used to result in self abuse
self fisticuffs
and i used to sing nursery rhymes on swings
and roundabouts
sea shanties in the bath
now i’m the idiotic hero splashing about
my own inadequacies
thinking it’s an achievement
to quit smoking five hundred and fifteen times
but at least i’ve stopped cheering on
these days they make more crap films
than jennifer aniston


P.A.Levy -Born East London but now residing amongst the hedge mumblers of rural Suffolk, P.A.Levy has been published in many magazines, from ‘A cappella Zoo’ to ‘Zygote In My Coffee’ and stations in-between.  He is also a founding member of the Clueless Collective and can be found loitering on page corners and wearing hoodies at www.cluelesscollective.co.uk

Wayne Russell







Upon Waking up Face Down in the Gutter




Funny thing is that just last week
I had sworn never to touch the drink
Yet here I was coming back to life, just
like a drunken Lazarus arisen from the
gutters of New Zealand.
I overshot my house by three doors and
crashed face first into the drainage ditch
of the elderly Smith family.
It must have been about two A.M. or
somewhere thereabouts, lucky for me
they were out of town visiting grandchildren.
The Irish pub was packed and the Karaoke
singers were all terrible, but at least on the
truly terrible renditions of Time after Time
or Do You Really Want to Hurt Me, I could
nip out to the back and hit my private stash
of grog.
I had planned ahead and thought to stock my
back pack full of beer, hiding it behind the skip
bin out behind the pub.
Either I was a bloody genus or a starving student
that could not afford his drink in any pub in this
God forsaken town.
Between desperate gulps of beer, I finally came
to the conclusion that I should ditch the horrible
singing, the horrible company, and the dingy pub
and start the two mile trek home.
Not realizing just what lay ahead in the frigid
starless night.


Wayne Russell is a creative writer born and raised in Florida. Previously, Wayne has resided ten years in New Zealand and one year in Scotland, he has seen much of the lonely planet and hopes to someday see more of it.

Wayne leads the freak squad over at Degenerate Literature, you can check them out on social media https://www.facebook.com/DehenerateLiterature/ or at their web site at http://degenerateliterature.weebly.com/issue-10.html 

Allison Grayhurst


One longing
Thriving in darkness,
one longing, reduced in the sun,
devoid of a plush pulse, dried up,
surrounded by feasting ants.
One longing, entombed.
One longing, dormant, awakened
divulged then defused. One longing
I should be happy to get rid of, but
I am not because it was a lifecord
bonding me to you, to your valiant warmth
and the promise of what I have never known.
I never received a soft forehead kiss from your solid
lips or your two hands kneading my
aching shoulders. I have let go of wanting it,
and am left hollow, still, without
wind over my waters.
I sometimes think of your love,
how it would have been to receive
a memento of reciprocated devotion.
How free I could have been
in your desirous presence.
Instead on this couch, in this same spot,
arms folded, feet cramping
from underuse. I walk, but
take the route of a circle. I’ve
lost the seventh sense which was
mine alone.
With no hope of you,
I am not whole, with the hope,
I am doomed. So I kill the hope,
leave it mid-road, so tiny
cars cannot see it to avoid, so deformed 
children cannot feel for it
to save it from destruction.
It is a blood clot
unknotted, holey socks
thrown out, birds used to a
a blue sky unleashed, grounded,
underfoot. A mealworm left
on the kitchen floor. Sibling animals,
connected beyond species recognition, beyond
cultures and ways and voices communicating.
Sugar cane on the tongue,
sucked on as a child –
remembrance of a heritage
destined to remain as stories embellished when told.
Great moon of the planet I escaped from,
I almost made it to you, that far, almost sat in your
crater-circles, gawking at the constellations.
I made it just past the stratosphere. But you know my body then
was the best it has ever been – gravity had been overcome,
no hollow bones or connections I could barely bear
to stomach. As it is, here, in this form, that body has died,
the soldier in me has died, along
with the guilt-ridden mushy heart
and the resulting fury. The light is perfection
on my back and flowers are here,
some wilted, some emerging.
Chiseling away the template mould
Like cotton spread,
thinning, rifting,
my mind was sold to tiny pills, angular
remedies that did not bother with results.
Saggy eyes, thoughts in slow motion,
funneling anxiety into walking dreams –
circulation corrupted, fingertips,
the tips of thumbs, dead and decaying.
I lie down across the end of this wave,
I lie down across a weakening buoyancy, see
two dead angels on the water, immaculately
spread, those keepers of simplicity,
seraphims guised as seagulls, see
connection perfected, the veil
between dimensions dissolving.
Later, another comes to hover, circle as I lie down,
mourning. My shoulders are blown, my arms are breached,
my back tightens and will not ease off. It is snowing
and it is spring. Angels continue to arrive, solid in their
grieving grace, circling the blank space that is bare space
around my head, edging inwards, into corners
I can finally talk about. Now
I can submerge my torso, my extremities,
see under water, grow callouses where they are needed,
hurt as I transform, hurt as I surrender
forcing myself through
levels of tight resistance, hurt to not freeze, still
talking to the angels who crest the water, but I am under
the water, becoming a seed that consumes itself,
breaks its shell, sprouts, breaks
the tethering hold.
My Lord is Majesty (let me)
Blood in urine, the path-flight of
a plane across a low horizon. Lifting,
spinning, a dream-drop like floating.
The answer “no” is all I am capable of. Kiss
me, let me be my fragmented self,
burrow like a termite into tree bark,
seeking living wood, or be a beetle
resting on dewy grass long
before the heat of noon, or like a weed
straight, tall, uninhibited by the cutter’s twine.
Let me be the shape of clunky cluster clouds,
a berry ripe, rich and easy to eat. Let me steal into
the veins of a garden rock, follow a squirrel’s pawprints
up across electric wires. Let me speak before I know anything,
before dread comes to cave my thoughts into a knot-hard ball,
sealing me with silencing futility, sucking out
the heart-beat of magnificent, like a fish flapping
in the oxygen ether,
hooked to a string, hooked to a stick, held
in a small child’s hands. Let me have faith again
in spite of this crushing calamity, trust again
in the companionship of God, protector
of what keeps me sane, merge with
God on every road, every forest path
missed, where the shadows are overbearing,
and the humidity!
Bear me up, Jesus of my master throne,
I see the light overcome.
I feel the toil and tear of survival’s whip,
feel this death come as a swarm of wasps –
the sound of many waspy legs nearing.
Bear me up, be for me like the purity of a washout,
deafening the tone of insect language, turning
these horror groans of my stretcher-strapped plans
into a strange body peace –
though stung, encased, consumed, bear me up
wet-cloth soothe me, embrace me through this heart-ache,
bear me up, give me the strength to surrender
into this death, into this exhale of absolute release.
Buckling up, keeping pace
never knowing when the heat will rise,
and overtake your sanity with its little alien
leaf worms burrowing into shallow crevices,
making crevices into canyons, unmanageable and ripe
for more irreversible destruction.
Normal as the sun and its radiation,
glory be the farce, biology, a pre-disposition
for madness, suicide
at 4 am – gunshot to the head
all for a ruined reputation or for love
lost during an Indian monsoon season.
A child playing early morning, opening doors,
a door, four-years old finding his father,
dead on the floor – blood pooled, drying,
vacuumed out blue steady eyes.
It was right for that boy to become a man who
turned to God and charity and
not to status, right that he knelt every night for his
five children, never knowing he would make it through
the violent revolutions, make it through losing
money, home, country and dog.
He made it through,
but not long after that. Not long after
the boat ride across the Indian, the Atlantic oceans,
leaving Eastern philosophies for a cold rainy winter pavement,
he died, giver of coal, on a doorstep,
finally home, in a country where he no longer belonged or
could find a way to honour the majesty, the tenderness
of what he built before.
Fingertips tingling too long
and lasting to not be a disease,
What does the chaos filter into, focus on,
transition to? The sky is green
against an even greener tree.
You count to the minutes through each day –
this thing, that thing, to do, get through,
not for yourself, but because you are committed,
because you love and know the consequences.
Dandelions under chaos,
fold the covers –
go back into the
Allison Grayhurst is a member of the League of Canadian Poets. Three times nominated for Sundress Publications “Best of the Net” 2015, she has over 850 poems published in over 380 international journals. She has twelve published books of poetry, seven collections, nine chapbooks, and a chapbook pending publication. She lives in Toronto with her family. She is a vegan. She also sculpts, working with clay;www.allisongrayhurst.com
            Some of the places her work has appeared in include Parabola (Alone & Together print issue summer 2012); Elephant Journal; Literary Orphans; Blue Fifth Review; The American Aesthetic; Agave Magazine; JuxtaProse Literary Magazine, Drunk Monkeys; South Florida Arts Journal; Gris-Gris; The Muse – An International Journal of Poetry, Storm Cellar, morphrog (sister publication of Frogmore Papers); New Binary Press Anthology; The Brooklyn Voice; Straylight Literary Magazine (print); The Milo Review; Foliate Oak Literary Magazine; The Antigonish Review; Dalhousie Review; The New Quarterly; Wascana Review; Poetry Nottingham International; The Cape Rock; Ayris; Journal of Contemporary Anglo-Scandinavian Poetry; The Toronto Quarterly; Fogged Clarity, Boston Poetry Magazine; Decanto; White Wall Review.

John Grey









Instant nothingness.

I’m crushed metal.

My stomach is a twisted steering wheel,

head, a sidewalk

sluiced by gutters of blood.

But then a shiver in my gut,

a claw at my throat.

One eye opens painfully,

glints stars, glass and flesh.

My nerves whisper to my heartbeat…

I’ve seen his face. It’s me.

A vibrating howl of pain.

A voice. Not God’s. Must be mine.

And my brow, a billion bee stings.

Now I remember.

My whole life didn’t flash before me.

Not unless it was those years driving the van,

the past swerving, crossing the yellow line.

No, I never left the present

and it didn’t leave me.

Arms ache. Legs pounds. Chest burns.

This moment’s all that I can handle.



















nothing survives the frost,

not even the dream-rose,

the imagined child


the January chill,

is that great teacher of patience,

that provocateur of despair


and my surroundings

are cut to the bone,

brown grass,

ice road,

air thin as life’s pleasures


and then there’s you,

on the couch,

quietly crawling up

into your body


and darkness

pressed against the window


draining the room’s substantiation
























She dreams the strange old house

that backs onto railway tracks

and the man with the hat down over his eyes

leaving by the back door.

“Hey you!” she cries but the man does not seem to hear,

She’s trying desperately to warn him

that the 12.05 will be along any minute,

that he’ll step into its path if he’s not careful,

The dream disintegrates with the words “12.05” on her lips.

The stranger’s out of earshot.

She says it to the ceiling, the ringing of the phone.


Brian’s on his way. He’s dropping off the children.

Great… from struggling to save a man’s life

to protecting her own sanity from assault.

Ben and Brenda… double B’s… no wonder she had none of her own.

So it’s out come the colored blocks.

Eager shrieks must have their outlets.

Tears need toys.

And Brian says he’ll be back by four,

So houses it is, cube stacked atop cube,

like nothing anyone ever lived in.

And buildings demolished with an angly slap,

not the way they usually come down.

So this is the price for being who she is.

Not barking dogs, not hugs, not drives into the country,

not kisses, not meals in restaurants,

but construction and deconstruction

in the middle of her parlor floor.

“Look out!” she cries from time to time.

“You’ll break something.”


Four o’clock, Brian returns, picks up his brood.

A peck on the cheek is the price he pays for his assumptions…

she will always be glad to do these favors

because once she could have been their mother.

“Yes, they behaved,” she says.

“Behave” after all is the verb form of “behavior.”

And doesn’t that describe what people do no matter what.

“Would you like a cup of coffee?” she asks,

but no, he must get going.

So what’s left to do but pick up the blocks,

put them back in the box,

thinking all the time, “Houses. Everything is houses,”

And strange houses.

Who can stand to live

in what families can make and break so easily.

And what must people think

as Brian leaves by the front door,

children laughing in his wake,

handsome face smiling at the passersby.

Like someone else’s dream, she imagines.

Nothing to do ‘til bedtime.

She steps onto the train tracks,

looks at her watch,.. 12.05

“Look out!” she cries.












John Grey is an Australian poet, US resident. Recently published in New Plains Review, Stillwater Review and Big Muddy Review with work upcoming in Louisiana Review, Cape Rock and Spoon River Poetry Review.

Neil Fulwood

Broken plastic casing and a scatter
of keys. Motherboards snapped.
A phone snatched up and pounded repeatedly
on the edge of a desk. Sheaves
of paper ferreted from confidential waste bins
and wadded beneath office furniture,
first-draft supplicants awaiting
the holy fire of a struck match.  Pray for us
now and in the hour of our HR meeting.
Drawers dragged from cabinets, contents dumped.
Plasma screens, boot-printed. Elastic bands
aimed from upper windows
at the fat arses of the hierarchy.
Join hands. Form the circle. Sumer is icumen in.  
Neil Fulwood’s poetry has been published in journals an ezines in the UK, US and Australia. He is co-editor, with David Sillitoe, of the anthology More Raw Material: work inspired by Alan Sillitoe. His first collection of poetry, No Avoiding It, is forthcoming from Shoestring Press in 2017.

On the Edge of the Weird – by Patrick Jordan


On the Edge of the Weird


I’m different.

I know that.

I do not, and will not

fucking conform.

I despise the status quo.


Normal can kiss my Irish ass.

I’m weird.

I’m strange.

So what.

I smile.

I laugh.

I enjoy this life.

I don’t live the way I was taught to.

I make up my own rules.

I behave weirdly.

I’m not normal or average.

Fuck the ordinary average guy.

I’m Extraordinary.

I find assurance on the edge.

I find the edge my friend.

My confidant.

The edge is my lover.

My mate.

My partner.

And I fucking push it

whenever I can.

I teeter out there on the edge.

I make the edge my home.

Those that are scared of the edge,

are dead.

Dried up inside.

Useless souls.

I’m Alive!

I’m Free.

The strangest thing is,

I’m this way all the time.

I was born like this.

I live like this.

And hopefully,

I’ll die like this.

This is not an act.

This is not a game.

This is not pretend.

This is me.

This is not hyperbole.


The weirdness and the edge

are my heart and soul.

I don’t know how to live any other way.

I wouldn’t want to either.

I love myself.

I love my weird, strange, kooky, quirky self.


It’s what does it for me.


And it always will.


-Paddy- 10/10/16


By Patrick Jordan

Listen to On the Edge of the Weird by p jo #np on #SoundCloud