Joni’s Colours

I listen to her voice paint a light and rainbow coloured folk song about a child whose eyes were bright but would never see, of crayons, trees and love. The colours flow through a Chelsea morning, with crimson beads and yellow curtains and a taxi, as if she’s singing just for me. A little green […]

What happened to the freedom of the sky?

I’m happy to have another poem in this month’s Visual Verse: An Anthology of Art and Words, Volume 8, Chapter 1, for which the image is an unusual one, a cartoon by John Samuel Pughe/Library of Congress. As ever, I’m in good company with Misky, Anmol and Kerfe, to name a few. Why not read […]

A Time of Ghosts

In the shadows of change, of life and thought,they anchored the past to their unsettled present.Obligations did not cease with death. Ghosts were obvious and continued to be potentimages of past sins, promises and regrets,seeping from the jet-black trappings, guilt-laden luxury and ornate statuary in graveyard and cemetery.The pleasurable shudder between living and deadhaunted Victorians […]

Medusa’s Demise

The metallic stench of blood slicks the rockand tickles the throat. No wonder snakes suffocate the silence with their incessant hiss.Some break away, alarmed by the cold kiss of death; some curl and spiral, others loopand tie themselves in knots. Spattered drupes of carmine, like red snakes’ eyes, gleam –Medusa no longer has the power […]

Dreams by Candlelight

I fell asleepin the pale heatand candle salve of twilight,nodding to an open book. In a pellucid questfor hallowed rest,my yellow dreamsploughed lucid farrowstowards the sunriseof my tomorrow. Kim M. Russell, 20th October 2020 My response to dVerse Poets Pub Poetics: The Charms of Samuel Greenberg Laura is back to host Poetics this week, with […]

Self-Cultivation During the Pandemic

I’m delighted to have another poem in Visual Verse Volume 7 Chapter 12. This time the ekphrastic inspiration came from an unusual image by Jemima Muir. As usual, my poem is in great company. You can find it on page 26 or you can go straight to ‘Self-Cultivation During the Pandemic‘. Linked to dVerse Poets […]

Grammar of Happiness

I remember you remember me remember when I lost my mind I remember it well making music making bread making money making my way downtown and then what and then the sun rave song and then we danced and then he kissed me poet for our times poet for hire poet for love poet wife […]

Ballad of Dark Beauty

Her dress of bombazine was wrappedaround her mottled body like a shroud,her hair was winter-dark, a raven trappedin the violent weir, so cold and loud. She lived apart, contemptuous and proud,believed to be a wanton witch, a lonelywanderer on the heath, at one with cloud,rain, moon and stars. She was the only night dancer on […]

Gentileschi’s Judith

You pin him down,you and your maid,in the dark shroud of the general’s tent. Oil lamp flareilluminates one bareshoulder, exposing the seductive skinand black hollow of your breasts;muscle-bound arms belie your femininity. Sweet revenge gives strength to slicethrough flesh, muscle and spine,fingers of one hand entangledin hair and beard,in the other handa sword. He offers […]

Figures in a Landscape

Many thanks to The Ekphrastic Review for including my poem in their latest Ekphrastic Writing Responses to a picture by Bertram Brooker. It’s called ‘Figures in a Landscape’ and it’s the fifth one down. I highly recommend reading all the responses, which are of a high standard, and I’m in excellent company with Merril Smith […]