A Pair of Poems from Our New Poetry Editors



I hear them in the dead of night
that first march in our ancient house
a symphony of tapping
their mating call passing back
and forth across the waste
of the attic bedroom

droppings on our bed linen
are prehistoric insects
a matchbox makes a tiny casket
tongues click like the beetles
a man trepans a beam
the damage appears insubstantial
the invasion unsuccessful
but such a cacophony at night

the house is shrouded in scaffold
perished oak scooped away
just powder they say
as they rush to prop the structure
steel poles on the inside
four thin atlases

wind whistles through the riven house
oak is doused with poison
new wood cut and spliced
we two sleep
in separate rooms

spring comes tapping again
the infertile creatures
have stronger instincts than ours

three years since our house was ripped open
the incursion uncovered
I hear it in the still of night
lone morse in one corner
one final beetle
tapping out his extinction
don’t listen for it I say to you
once you hear it
it can’t be unheard

Katie Jenkins

Man’s land


When we talk about our hearts
it’s radical
but it should be common:
there’d be fewer deaths.

Each day
man’s hard land
is a less-man’s land,
a no-man’s land.

Anguish hidden:
silent disease;

Solar eclipse
-brave faces:
deadly snow’s
cotton wool deception.


Let tears flow
in mellifluous rivulets,
diaphanous ribbons,

Let vulnerability
seep into virility:
acquire soft strength.


Your island needs you:

unfold all fists,
untie all boats,
sow compassion:


David Hanlon

Related Blog Posts