Not the Glory in My Garden by Maggie Storer

My garden is a garden that has no stately view.
There’s a railing at the bottom with some privet poking through.
Our terrace is some decking and peacocks, they can’t fly,
So the magpies and the pigeons would attack them from the sky.

For where the straggly weeds grow along the rotting fence,
You’ll find a broken shed among the nettles there so dense.
No potting shed or cold frame will you find within the grounds,
Just plastic toys and bicycles lying all around.

And there you’ll see the children, toddlers, girls and boys
Told to go and play outside, to go and make some noise.
A place where they can let off steam and shout and say rude words,
For the glory in my garden is the freedom it deserves.

’Cos I can’t pot begonias and I hate the prickly rose.
I’m the one who always kills off everything that grows.
I’m not concerned about the lawn where weeds and moss abide,
For it’s there to be a playground for my kids who play outside.

Adam was not a gardener and God who made him sees
That he gave him Eve to cherish in the garden on his knees.
So when the day is over you can clap your hands and say
Let’s astro-turf the garden and get out there and play.

Maggie Storer has gathered quite a collection of poems and is tentatively sending them out for approval.  She helps to run a local creative writing group in South Staffordshire. Her short stories have appeared in her local newspaper, but she now wants to concentrate on her poetry.


Barbie, Sindy, John and Mike by Thomas McColl

With her ten-fingered lynch mob,
my sister, Tracey, tore my Action Man apart,
after finding Sindy and Barbie,
both of them naked on my bed,
discovering the joys of lesbian sex.

I didn’t realise they were sisters
or that Barbie was due to get hitched that day to Mike,
or that my Action Man’s name was Mike.

Tracey, with a severed plastic leg still in her hand,
explained that Mike,
while serving at the front line
that stretched across the living room,
had ‘on purpose stepped on a land mine’,
distraught at having heard the news
that his bride-to-be ‘was a dyke’.

My other Action Man,
which Tracey named as John,
was married off that week to Sindy,
but the marriage was a sham.
With some encouragement from me,
Sindy and Barbie continued their lesbian love affair
at every available opportunity.

That Sunday afternoon,
with John replacing Mike at the front,
and Tracey out shopping with mum,
I brought Sindy and Barbie together once again
to have their fun.

Thomas McColl has had poems published in magazines such as Envoi, Rising, Iota and Ink, Sweat and Tears, and his first full collection of poetry, Being With Me Will Help You Learn, is out now from Listen Softly London Press.



A Blue and Pink Encounter at the Mall by Jinny Fisher

A Blue and Pink Encounter at the Mall

Jinny Fisher lives in Somerset and is a member of Taunton’s Juncture 25 and Wells Fountain Poets. Her poems have been published in The Interpreter’s House, Under the Radar, The Broadsheet and Prole. She also gained Highly Commended in York Mix Competition and 2nd Prize in Interpreter’s House Competition (2016).


Poetry Lesson by Carole Bromley

Choose any animal, the teacher said,
maybe one you don’t like
and listen to his point of view.

Mary chose a rat, Fred a spider,
Jack a duck-billed platypus
but I thought of the rudest word I knew

and picked a dung beetle
not because I don’t like them
but so I could say poo.

Miss wasn’t amused and sent me
to stand outside the door
where there was nothing to do

so I pulled faces at the others
when her back was turned.
Jack laughed. She threw him out too.

We listed animals we didn’t like:
crocodiles, bulls, woodlice, sharks,
wasps, rhinos, the kangaroo.

I said ‘What about seagulls
when they snatch your chips?’
and Jack said ‘What about you?’

So I said he was an ape anyway
like the king of the swingers.
He belonged in a zoo.

But just then the head walked by,
looked in at the class writing poems,
said ‘What have you been up to?’

So Jack looked a litle bit sheepish
and I said ‘We’ve been acting daft.’
And he said ‘So what should you do?’

And I said ‘Say sorry to miss, Sir’
and Jack said ‘Not do it again’
and he said ‘Gentlemen, after you,’

and opened the door to the classroom
where Jack managed two lines about seagulls
and I did a dead good haiku.

Carole Bromley lives in York where she is the stanza rep and runs poetry surgeries. Winner of a number of first prizes including the Bridport. Two collections with Smith/Doorstop, the most recent being The Stonegate Devil, October 2015.