No 141 - June 2010
‘THE BOX’ - READERS VOTE ISSUE 140 - RESULTS
1st Death in Winter Daffni Percival
2nd Running Through The Rain Joy Saunders
3rd Risus Sardonicus Patrick B Osada
4th Ashen-Grey For You Etelka Marcel
REACHERS NEWS AND VIEWS
Our thoughts go to Jane Fraser Esson whose husband John passed away in March. Our sympathies and best wishes from your friends at RP, Joan.
Two books from Reachers in the IDP office, ‘Centuries of skin’ by Joanna Ezekiel, Ragged Raven Poetry and haibun collection ‘Travelling Light’ by Graham High, Ram Publications. Both £7. Plus anthology from Ragged Raven Poetry ‘The world is made of glass’. Includes Will Daunt, Roger Elkin, Joanna Ezekiel and KV Skene. Contact me with any query and I’ll pass details to authors/publishers. Also Elements of Healing: A Collection of Poems and Short Stories. A5. 36 pages. Edited by Susan Jane Sims. Foreword by Victoria Field. ISBN 978-0-9565328-0-0 £5.00 Profits to Lapidus South West. Order from: Sue Sims, 21 Davis Close, Barrs Court, Bristol BS30 7BU
How the year is galloping by, how quickly the voting time comes round!
1) Wensleydale evening - Tina Negus: your descriptive poems always a delight
2) The Retreat - William Wilson: well portrayed, peaceful as it should be = The Moon's Daughter -Pauline Hawkesworth: original and stirring
3) The Topiary Garden - Gerald Hampshire: ah! so sad and Risus Sardonicus - Patrick B Osada: delightful description with a poignant twist Geoffrey’s Trust, what a lovely nugget; Joy's Running Through the Rain reminds me of when my son was a teenager and we used to sit on the beach watching storms approach, then make a mad dash for home when
the rain came; Angela's Genesis, aren't grandchildren wonderful!; Enjoyed Dawn’s Black Fox, 'He merries our path', lovely. Welcome Graham (High) nice to see your name among us.
Happy holidays, Claire Knight
Thanks to all the readers who voted for Call me old-fashioned. I'm savouring the irony of being rewarded for a poem deliberately badly written. My favourite in issue 140 is Victorian Underlings by Beryl Cross. The subject matter is pleasingly out of the ordinary and the format and rhyme scheme are ideally suited to it.
Second, I liked Old Habits by Josie Davies for its observation and simple poignancy. A very touching piece.
Third place, after some heart-searching, Seekers by Eleanor Dent mysterious and needing more than one reading: always a good sign. Knocking at the door:- Eric Langford, Will Daunt, and Etelka Marcel.
Best wishes to all, Peter Johnson
I've never been to the Quantocks, it sounds delightful and I must try and go there. Also much liked Dawn's "Black Fox". The cover is gorgeous -a real Spring delight. I found many poems this month for my short list but after much head-scratching I've selected these as my best three:
1. Ashen-Grey For You by Etelka Marcel -a powerful statement and haunting poem.
2. The Moon's Daughter by Pauline Hawkesworth - some great images.
3. Death in Winter by Daffni Percival - a memorably simple poem.
There were others I might easily have chosen so must mention -Susan Jane Sims, Peter Butler's excellent haiku, William Wilson, Patrick B Osada, Michael Newman, Tim Negus, Angela Bradley and others whose poems I admired. With Best wishes, Ron Woollard
The cover design for me encapsulated hope for the summer. Congratulations on a glorious design.
1. Samphire Hoe – Claire Knight
2. Victorian Underlings – Beryl Cross
3. The Topiary Garden – Gerald Hampshire
Best wishes for the summer ahead. Christine Flowers
I'm not sure Soxx would approve of his photograph being split by the spine of 140; he'll be calling his agent if this kind of thing goes on. Once inside, the old problem of choosing favourites is pleasantly renewed, but I do have a clear number 1: The Laureate's Ladies by Norman Brown. As a Betjeman fan, this was guaranteed to appeal to me (or perhaps annoy me); it's subtle construction and clever use of references does not disappoint, and it has a rhyme scheme of which JB himself would surely have approved. The result is a fine piece of work, both amusing and honest. (2) is Long Boats Shortened by Eric Langford, with Seekers by Eleanor Dent at (3). Susan Jane Sims's How to eat an avocado is an evocative treat and an interesting contrast with D.H. Lawrence's How to eat a fig in Women in Love. Once again the poems from Ronnie and Dawn 'bookend' a thought-provoking issue with memorable imagery; I particularly like Dawn's fox who 'merries our path’. With all good wishes, Roger Harvey
1. How to eat an avocado – Susan Jane Sims
2. My Heart Would Argue Otherwise – Glenise Lee
3. The Laureate’s Ladies – Norman Brown
All good wishes, Graham High
There are some rich seams to mine in RP140 this month between the attractive covers again. Black Fox is evocative and in this issue there are many striking images. How to eat an avocado by Susan Jane Sims successfully parodies Wallace Stevens who has been said to be a principal influence on 20th century verse. You are including some attractive short poems these days for example by Joan Corney and Peter Butler. I shall do the impossible now and vote! Third I go for The Retreat by William Wilson. Second Seekers by Eleanor Dent: both provide striking images. First Premier Slave by Roy Titch. Best wishes, Peter Day
The cover of RP140 is gorgeous! Can’t vote on the poems having not yet read them carefully yet, but How to eat an avocado strikes a distinct chord with me, not only for the lovely words but because I have problems with avocadoes – they are either hard as bricks or turn unhealthily black on me – but yes, the rare joy when they are just right!
Best wishes, Ruth Parker
Firstly, thanks to all who voted Swan into second place – I’m delighted. Your visit to Somerset has bore fruit with the superb Quantocks Now. You two must be superhuman to write quality poetry, as equally accomplished is Dawn’s Black Fox, in addition to publishing three perfect magazines, anthologies and collections. How on Earth do you do it? (Ah, if I told you I’d have to shoot you, David!) Staying with the fox theme, my number one goes to Patrick B Osada's 'Risus Sardonicus'. Superb and sensitive imagery as felt by the child, turning to stupefying shock in the last two stanzas. Brilliant! Second goes to 'The Cataraque' by David J. Costello. This is beautifully described and haunting. A well deserved runner up in the Sefton poetry competition. My third place is 'Running Through The Rain' - A joyous poem from Joy that lifted my spirits. Others worth a mention are Tina's 'Wensleydale evening', 'Dawn at Easdale Tarn', by Peter Tomlinson, and Etelka's hard hitting, 'Ashen Grey For You'. Another great issue to be treasured, but I feel sorry for poor Soxx, who has a split personality this time! Summer Dreams from David Norris-Kay
Many thanks for issue 140, with its flourish of blossom on the cover. It took me a while this time to spot you, Soxx. On that furry (or furtive) note, I must add how much I enjoyed Dawn's 'Black Fox' poem. The phrase, 'startled by jays', is a most resonant one in your fine Quantock poem, Ronnie. John S. Mercer made me smile with his 'Votes 2010', and there were many poems that brightened my day or tugged at the heart strings. I finally came up with the following line-up:
'The Cataraque' by David J. Costello. I was drawn in by the evocative use of language: 'flocks of guilty waves, all crested white in foaming fury'...
'Death in Winter' by Daffni Percival. I found myself resisting this poem initially on the grounds of the sad nature of the theme. However, it was a poem that refused to release itself from my clutches! Daffni's deft handling of the subject is most compelling. Also 'Underlings' by Beryl Cross. A masterful and ultimately triumphant poem. Beryl has tackled an unusual subject with flair.
3. 'Berrow beach' by Michael Newman. I loved the touching simplicity of this poem. The seaweed necklace worked for me!
4. 'Long Boats Shortened' by Eric Langford. A great song of a seafaring Viking. The theme and rolling rhythm complement each other effectively.
Gower greetings to all, Caroline Gill
Beautiful cover, Ronnie! And I loved Dawn’s poem about Soxx.
1. Ashen-Grey For You – Etelka Marcel
2. Victorian Underlings – Beryl Cross
3. Wensleydale Evening – Tina Negus and Dawn at Easedale Tarn
– Peter Tomlinson
I also enjoyed Genesis, Running Through the Rain and many others.
Best wishes, Joan Sheridan Smith
Another great edition of RP. Your poem Quantocks Now and Dawn’s Black Fox are, as always, well-crafted and a pleasure to read.
1. Ashen-Grey For You – Etelka Marcel
2. Death in Winter – Daffni Percival
3. Pink Snow – Pippa McCathie
With good wishes to all Reachers and Soxx! Margaret Whitaker
Thanks for the early May Reach. I liked the way the blossom filled back and front covers, blending into one and found Soxx this time.
Voting 1 The Moon So Large – Kate Edwards
2 Victorian Underlings – Beryl Cross
3 Readers’ Votes 2010 – John S. Mercer
4 The Topiary Garden – Gerald Hampshire
Close followers: Wensleydale Evening – Tina Negus: The Laureate’s Ladies – Norman Brown: Reaching for the Moon – Mala Mason: Old Habits – Josie Davies: In Memory of Aunt Kate – Ruth Parker and Samphire Hoe – Claire Knight. You took us, as ever, on your walk and I could imagine it all. I have never been to the area of The Quantocks, but could see it all. I was with Dawn, too, in her Black Fox tribute to Soxx. “He merries our path,,” said so much.
With good wishes to you all, Valerie Flatman
Loved the cover and Soxx split in two.
1) The Retreat - William Wilson
2) The Topiary Garden - Gerald Hampshire
3) Singing for Karluv - John Webber
I fell for Fruit by RG/DB. Short but amazing. Nice idea to put a snippet on the cover. Also Old Habits -Josie and Risus Sardonicus - Patrick
I was interested that Caroline Gill was intrigued by my poem Geometric and thank you to Kate for choosing "Geometric" as her 2nd choice.
Thanks Ronnie for all your hard work. Carol Ann Darling
What a lovely cover on RP140. Clever to get Soxx on the spine!
1. Running Through The Rain – Joy Saunders
2. Singing for Karluv – John Webber
3. Wensleydale Evening – Tina Negus
4. Seekers – Eleanor Dent
Others especially enjoyed – Squash, Dawn at Easedale Tarn, Full Day, The Retreat, In Seventh Heaven, The Cataraque, Pink Snow, The Moon’s Daughter, Kate Moss and Other Narcissi. Thanks for all your hard work.
Love to all, Joan Corney
What a beautiful cover to RP140. I just wanted to pick a bunch – congrats Ronnie, although poor Soxx must be feeling ‘disjointed’. As usual, the contents are also beautiful, and what a job to choose, but here goes:
The Topiary Garden – Gerald Hampshire and Running Through The Rain – Joy Saunders
The Moon So Large – Kate Edwards and The Laureate’s Ladies – Norman Brown
Singing For Karluv – John Webber and Readers Votes 2010 – John S Mercer
As always lots to read many times and thanks for another excellent
edition, Best wishes, Rita Steward
You know that I am prejudiced because of my Quantocks links, but even if I were not I think that Quantocks Now is one of the finest poems you have written. Bagborough incidentally, is where my great uncle Edwin James Cross was baptised in 1840. I love Dawn’s Black Fox too.
I must put Gerald Hampshire’s The Topiary Garden first. It is extremely moving and the lines ‘The sun is bright / but there are shadows in my mind’ reflect the poem’s sad but beautiful emotions. Second for me is Susan Jane Sims’ delightful How to eat an avocado. How accurately and almost sensuously she has depicted this. Third placing is more difficult, but I think I will choose Risus Sardonicus by Patrick B Osada. I also once encountered a dead fox. It was a morning after a bitterly cold night. I had to stroke his fur in a sad tribute. Love to everyone, Beryl Cross
I still find it remarkable that Reach has now published 140 issues! It’s a long way from its early days published on the Wirral. Quite difficult to cast my votes this time as there is so much good in the issue. Top marks for cover as usual Ronnie.
1st - Genesis by Angela Bradley. An absolute delight.
2nd -Death in Winter by Daffni Percival. A lovely poem. And Daffni, I know which I prefer as well.
3rd -Running through the Rain by Joy Saunders. Very well written and a delight to read.
Best to all, Peter Tomlinson
Splendid content and stunning cover, on which (this time) I spotted Soxx, simulating a split personality on either side of the spine.
Running Through The Rain – Joy Saunders. Clever rhymes capture a joyful moment in time.
Genesis – Angela Bradley. Evoked memories and feelings occasioned by the birth of my own first grandchild.
Wensleydale Evening – Tina Negus. The scene is brought to vivid life through accurate observation and unpretentious reporting.
I was also taken by the imagery in Richard Bonfield’s two short poems.
Yours aye, Norman Bissett.
Another super cover – love the rich blue against the white. Soxx almost didn’t make it this time but earned his tribute in Dawn’s fine poem. My first two choices this month are for poems which are so successful when read aloud – and I’m all for that. I can hear them going down well with an audience. My last two are for atmosphere, alliteration and consonance.
1. The Moon So Large – Kate Edwards
2. The Laureate’s Ladies – Norman Brown
3. Risus Sardonicus – Patrick B Osada
4. Wensleydale Evening – Tina Negus
I also very much enjoyed poems by Beryl Cross, Susan Jane Sims, David J Costello, William Wilson, Pippa McCathie, Lyn Woollacott, Joy Saunders, John S Mercer, Richard Bonfield and Roy Titch. There are always so many more poets worthy of mention besides the winners. Very best Wishes, Josie Davies
Always difficult these days to decide but, to start with the beginning and the end, loved both 'Quantocks Now' and 'Black Fox' - great to know all three of you enjoyed that Somerset magic. Also loved John Mercer's 'Readers' Votes 2010' but it didn't quite make it into my top three which were 1) Daffni's 'Death In Winter', 2) Joy's 'Running through the Rain' and 3) Patrick's 'Risus Sardonicus'. And yet another brilliant cover!
Voting....thought I had it sussed, then re-read Josie Davies old habits wow, blown away by the imaginative use of words: "happy-go-button and pocket-free" and "holes know their place and cannot confuse" How good is that?? So…
1. Josie Davies Old Habits - clever title too
2. Daffni's Death in winter - compact and descriptive/ Eric's Longboats
3. The two birth poems -Angela's Genesis, and T Ruthven's Fatherhood
- well juxtaposed, and both excellent. Love Tina
I loved the cover, good photography, and evocative of Spring. High standard design, as are all IDP products. There were so many good strong poems that will stay long in my memory. Wensleydale Evening by Tina Negus was my favourite; I felt I was looking at a painting, by Constable perhaps. Singing for Karluv by John Webber came a close second for me; I loved the last stanza which tied it all together. Death in Winter by Daffni Percival told its story with beautiful economy, and rounded it off with a clear comment, spare and truthful. Michael Newman's Berrow Beach, Richard Bonfield's Narcissi, Gerald Hampshire's The Topiary Garden, were all memorable, I could go back and pick out another dozen!
As well as enjoying savouring the poems, I am learning all the time what works and makes a strong well crafted poem. Thank you Ronnie and Dawn for the sweat blood and tears that goes into IDP!
Best wishes, Jenna Plewes
Hi Ronnie!,,,Fantastic cover issue 140...love the MAY blossom!..my votes for issue 140 are 1-Risus Sardonicus by Patrick B Osada..2-The Laureates Ladies by Norman Brown...3-Seekers by Eleanor Dent...though many marvellous poems again made it a bit of a struggle!..I was also delighted and honoured that my 'Paradiddle' got a 2nd place and equal 3rds with a couple of mentions in issue 139...Thanks to all! Fantastic issues all round and what great value for money! 'Applauds' to R + D! Loved Soxx either side of the spine! Christine May Turner...x
Lovely cover -real essence of spring. Soxx is being a bit devious, showing barely half his face. Now I have to choose:
First is easy as I fell in love with it instantly - as with the city there portrayed.
1st. Singing for Karluv John Webber
2nd Josie Davies' Old Habits. It conjures all the comforts associated with
and old garment.
3rd. Pauline Hawkesworth's The Moon's Daughter - such a scintillating
version of moon watching, quite haunting.
4th. Etelka Marcel's Ashen- grey for You - like a tragic ghost.
So difficult, comparing poems, especially as there is never time to really reflect. So here are the rest of the poems I noted as I read from the beginning. Now I have subtracted my choices and am left with these who deserve more than runner up status but one can't choose all. Seekers Eleanor Dent; Risus Sardonicus Patrick B. Osada; Running Through the Rain Joy Saunders; Readers' votes 2010 John S Mercer; Premier Slave Roy Titch; Reaching for the Moon Mala Mason. Best to all, Daffni
My choices from this month are:
3rd – Risus Sardonicus by Patrick B Osada
2nd – The Moon’s Daughter by Pauline Hawksworth
1st – Bag of Bones by Will Daunt.
Very impressed with this last poem and checked out the details of “Powerless” on the site. May well part with the cash in due course! This sets a very high standard for everyone. Best to all Dave Costello
140 has done it again, given me poetic indigestion, belly-ache – both in the best poss-ible taste (!) and admiration for my ‘fellow-Reachers’.
1. The Moon So Large – Kate Edwards
2. Running Through the Rain – Joy Saunders
3. The Moon’s Daughter – Pauline Hawkesworth
4. Victorian Underlings – Beryl Cross
Special mention to Josie and Richard on p42. I love Josie’s ‘settles himself in the folds of the years….’ Love, Etelka Marcel
Thanks for another excellent issue:
1. The Moon So Large – Kate Edwards
2. Running Through the Rain – Joy Saunders
3. Death in Winter – Daffni Percival
All good wishes, Ted Harriott
I liked the flower cover design very much. And your Quantocks Now is rich in imagery Ronnie. Dawn’s Black Fox has some memorable phrases too, like ‘merries our path/ feet sharp like arrow heads/ to sheep hippyness’
1. Dawn at Easedale Tarn – Peter Tomlinson. The strong message in the poem was well drawn into other things.
2. Wensleydale Evening – Tina Negus. This was a relaxed and gentle poem, telling a story without romanticising; nice and fresh.
3. Moon Angel – Denise Margaret Hargrave
Hope all is well with the RP/DT clan. Sincerely, Angela Porter
RP 140 immaculately turned out as usual, with a specially superb blossomy cover. My appreciation and thanks to those who voted for Plunge: such feedback always helps to stoke the creative fire. As ever, current RP contained much to be admired. Your poem and Dawn’s were most appealing, but of those I could vote for:
1. Reaching for the Moon – Mala Mason. Mala’s work has a deep quality of perception and this was no exception.
2. Dawn at Easedale Tarn – Peter Tomlinson. He made the Wordsworth’s picnic with Coleridge come alive for me.
3. The Topiary Garden – Gerald Hampshire, which I found both evocative and touching.
Love to all, Pamela Constantine
Reach 140 keeps up the very high standard we have come to expect. My favourite three are as follows: 1) Ashen-Grey For You (what a lovely name: Etelka Marcel!) 2) Squash 3) Bag of bones. Very close behind these are Dawn at Easedale Tarn, The Cataraque, The Retreat, Death in Winter, Berrow Beach, Old Habits, Victorian Underlings and Reaching for the moon. Congratulations on the deal with Central Books. I wish all Reachers some warmer weather! Love, Eleanor
Thanks for another stunning issue of Reach Poetry, and for publishing my poem Reaching For the moon. I wrote this in a very bad time of my life and it did help me to get better. I really enjoyed reading both yours and Dawn's poems, they are really beautiful.
1. Risus Sardonicus – Patrick B Osada
2. In Memory of Aunt Katie – Ruth Parker
3. My Heart Would Argue Otherwise – Glenise Lee
Love and Blessings, Mala Mason
Congratulations on a perfect issue140 Ronnie. Diversification is the name of the game when it comes to poetry; it seems as this is what I find in every 'REACH' and 140 is no different. The perfect bound nature of the magazine makes it a perfect shelf filler, and so handsome to! Difficult it as is to make my decisions I place 'ASHEN-GREY FOR YOU' by Etelka Marcel. This is theft of life itself. No 2 has to be 'DEATH IN WINTER' by Daffni Percival. The cat was quicker than the gun. And No 3, Lynn Woollacott's 'SQUASH'. The basic lessons in life put most succinctly. I also enjoyed immensely; Your 'Quantocks Now' Ronnie, I feel I know something of Somerset from the illuminating poem. Also 'Dawn At Easedale Tarn' by Peter Tomlinson and 'The Cataraque' by David J Costello. It seems prayer evens things in Beryl Cross's 'Victorian Underlings' all making for a brilliant read this month.
From beautiful Yorkshire and Eric Langford
Hats off to Susan Jane Sims whose review of my most recent collection, A Leeds Childhood, was really top-notch. Thank you Susan. I was very moved by Gerald Hampshire’s evocative verse, and I feel sure that many of our fellow writers will greatly empathise with the sentiments so sensitively expressed. Here, then, are my current nominations:
1. The Topiary Garden – Gerald Hampshire
2. Victorian Underlings – Beryl Cross
3. Seekers – Eleanor Dent
Best wishes, Bernard M Jackson
A delightful cover to 140, they get better and better. Loved your "Quantocks Now" and Dawn's "Black Fox", I'm sure Soxx appreciates the sentiments. It was very difficult choosing this month, but here goes before I change my mind. First to "Risus Sardonicus" by Patrick B Osada, beautiful imagery, the phrase "hypnotized by death" and the last line tell it all. Joint second to "Death in Winter" by Daffni Percival, simple clean language carrying an important message, and "My Heart Would Argue Otherwise" by Glenise Lee, for me this rang such strong bells, although for Africa substitute Mauritius, loved the image of "trying to box smoke". Joint third to "Wensleydale Evening" by Tina Negus, a magical picture of a place I now long to visit, and "Seekers" by Eleanor Dent, a thought provoking poem with great rhythm. Too many honourable mentions to list here! Love to everyone from a sunny but still chilly Guernsey,
******VOTES COUNTED FROM HERE UNTIL PRINT******
- 10th Muse
- Angel Exhaust
- Blithe Spirit
- Brando's hat
- Brittle Star
- Cannon's Mouth, The
- Coffee House, The
- Dream Catcher
- Floating Bear, The
- French Literary Review, The
- Frogmore Papers, The
- Global Tapestry
- Grosseteste Review
- Homeless Diamonds
- Interpreter's House, The
- Journal, The
- Lamport Court
- London Magazine, The
- Modern Poetry in Translation
- Monkey Kettle
- Neon Highway
- New Welsh Review
- North, The
- Obsessed with pipework
- Oxford Poetry
- Painted, spoken
- Paper, The
- Pen Pusher Magazine
- Poetry Cornwall
- Poetry London
- Poetry London (1951)
- Poetry Nation
- Poetry Review, The
- Poetry Salzburg Review
- Poetry Scotland
- Poetry Wales
- Private Tutor
- Purple Patch
- Rain Dog
- Reach Poetry
- Review, The
- Rialto, The
- Second Aeon
- Seventh Quarry, The
- Smiths Knoll
- Strange Faeces
- Tabla Book of New Verse, The
- Tolling Elves
- Ugly Tree, The
- Wolf, The
- Yellow Crane, The