A new weekly series featuring elegantly woven poems by Dan Crockett and wonderfully abstract imagery from the lens' of contributors.

Uncommon Ideals

The first breath is a beauty;

Whispering of the north like a kiss

Gilded hammer come tapping

Licking the dun dunes

Sweeping the tawny sea

A chill fist come rapping

At the doors of you,

of me

Bay burn the first

Runners of the dawn train

Ripples, creeping in beneath castles

Under dismantled factories

Between oak groins tar black

Onto reefs of hell

And fain the eyes that track

This first building of

the swell

A copper peak like running snuff

Bang, bang, bang

From the north she pours

Stirring the remaining cod

Sister wind swung south

Waking the Farne-bound seals

And met by land she roars

Dipped in sepia,

flayed bister

Delight for uncommon ideals


photo by Jack Johns

Heartwood Thrall

The wyke rests its wildness

Sleep now, beast, sleep

For we dance in the dawn

Deep in the heartwood

Morning light comes strafing

Parting the ancient oaks

Landslides under urchin paws

New pages in the book of stone

That fiend with giant hands

Who smacks eternal lips

Groans a query:

How long can this last?

Place of endless past

Vast nothingness space

Tree roots to the edge

And beast face behind

With fearsome breath

Salt in the whiskers

Fire torching the groves

Burning to the brine

The beck calling out:

We are clinging to you

You are our one hope

(But in cracked paving

Plants grow thick and free

Infinite capacity

Of this tranquil land

This rock and sand

This mist-wrapped sea,

To heal)

From beast cliff a bird keens

The peel rends

Stitches in the cloth of time

A final, futile roar appends:

This is richer than gold

The horizon lifts

The beck boils

Trees wrap the shoreline bends

Falling from the cliff,

Falling fast

Flightless, unflying,

Resigned to the crunch of the floor

Tight with trappings

The last question unheard

Sorrow; flightless birds


photo by Jack Johns

The battle of water and land

Under darkling moon the day black sea

Extended an arm to silence the sun

Gold the residual glow and hiss

As that disc, extinguished, fell

Then the water jumped up to roar;

I am leviathan, the sea is within me

I declare war on this, mother land

Then the peagreen water commands

To drown the lichened rocks, the sand

To smother

To strangle all in a yawn of ice

Rigor Mortis brung with dawn

I am leviathan, the sea is within me

Nothing but birds remain, pinwheeling

Keening for their loss of perch

Angry at the sea come stealing

Tired beneath the church of sky

Until at last, exhausted they fall

And go under, evermore

photo by Jack Johns

For more of Jack's work: http://www.jack-johns.co.uk