Spring Showcase – March 2016

Sunday, 13 March 2016

Susan Jane Sims

Editor: Susan Jane Sims


Poems by Andrew Greenslade, Julie Sampson, Lizzie Ballagher, Jo Waterworth, Pallab Pathak, Annest Gwilym, Sukarma Rani Thareja, Michael Docker and Gary Beck

Photographs by Chris Sims

• Archive of all Poetry Space showcases


Editor’s notes

It was a pleasure for this edition to take a turn once again at editing The Showcase. I looked for images and lines that took me away from the every day and poems and poets who attempted to do something different. In Tension Lines,  “a rose levitates off the page” and “the sea has stopped waving”. I love this poem, the world is turned on its head and there are echoes of Stevie Smith’s “not waving but drowning“. In Julia’s Seascape, the poet explores her loss of self with a light touch. The glorious spirit of childhood is captured in Red Kite. “To grab the wild-mare wind” – what a line! After the down to earth title of Poem (to Accompany a Gift of Jam) lines like “the unsettling lurch of my womb/when the thought of you naked caught me by surprise” are a total delight. I love the sustained metaphor in the poem. The short poem My home is in the World is lovely, capturing the fact that the world itself is accepting and peaceful, it is just humankind that disturbs the peace. I love the sumptuous world created in The Greenhouse:” sun-born globes red as rubies/hang like baubles.” Le Chatelier’s Principle (LCP) is perhaps an unusual choice for The Showcase, however I appreciated the fact that this poet is doing something quite fascinating with poetry here, making it into a teaching aid for students. The collage illustration is the poet’s too. Hospital Dying is a sombre look at death in hospital. I love the strong finish. The nature of news coverage and how it sets out to shock rather than inform is explored neatly in Accelerated Horror and finally to end with, a poem that delights both in the magic of words and celebrates a coming of age. (Sixty Five)

Thank you to everyone who has submitted work to Poetry Space.


Tension Lines

The line here

plays transcendental beauty, timeless

embedded trails of wondrous virility,

a rose levitates off the page, odour felts,

extricates, intoxicates; cannot forget

the sun and the rainbow and the seas waving tranquility.

The line here

lurid combat-us, prime-evil effect-us,

embedded entrails, grotesque viruses,

words jumble-up, a fist jumps off the page,

fractious, perilous; cannot forgive

the sun and the rainbow and the sea has stopped waving.


Andrew Greenslade


Showcase March 16 1


Julia’s Seascape


I cannot trawl

your intimate seas

your stars


and the blue healing

of letters






rising  like dolphins

from sea-grass


and waves

haul memories


the fall




of the self


Julie Sampson (UK


Showcase March 16 2

Red Kite


On Butser Hill the little boys lifts

His laughter to the sky.

Small hands would capture air,

Would catch at clouds & dare

To grab the wild-mare wind by her mane:

Frail balsa sticks spiral aloft

With a blazing tail & comet trail

Of ribbons red as strawberries.


Red as the little boy’s scarlet coat,

His red kite climbs the air’s free stairs

And the boy’s soft heart soars up.


“Red kite! Red kite! Oh, look! Red kite!


And when I was only a little child I took

Great-Uncle Jack Bookless’ bird-watching book

Into my greedy, happy hands, ransacked it

With avid curiosity to read of wonders.

But no page, no picture was there

Of an air-agile, rare & burnished red bird

With graceful wings & a speckled back;

Nor of the wide forked tail in white & black.


Now, though, as this red kite scours the skies;

Now as this red kite bends her bright eyes

On me, I laugh & my heart soars up.


“Red kite! Red kite! Oh, look! Red kite!


Lizzie Ballagher (UK)


showcase March 16 3Poem (to Accompany a Gift of Jam)


I came home, and chanced across

a wartime booklet – fruit and vegetable preserving –

sitting across the top of a row of books

on one of my bookshelves.


The fact that I lay on my bed

and assiduously read

all the way to page twenty

(Tomatoes are in a class by themselves)

may tell you a little of how much

I was attempting to avoid thinking about

our evening of poetry.


The fact that I laid the booklet down

and picked up my pen

to dissect with tender skill

the unsettling lurch of my womb

when the thought of you naked caught me by surprise

may tell you a little of how much I failed.


I used to bottle feelings quite successfully

using briny tears, acid thoughts

and a lot of pressure.

These days I just make jam.

This one’s a plum:




Jo Waterworth (UK)


My home is in the World
Earth is green

Man says
He or she is black
He or she is white ,
But stream don’t say
She is blue or black

Trees give way to stream to flows
Streams give cool life to trees
They cooperate each other
Man says, they are Earthian but don’t do that!

This is difficult to say
Earth is green.

 Pallab Pathak (India)

March showcase 16 4


The Greenhouse


At the top of the field

a room of wood and glass

that holds wonders.


Air heavy with earth and growth,

sun-born globes red as rubies

hang like baubles.


They leave a tang on the hands

and juice down the chins

of little thieves –


pick the bottom ones or those

hidden behind sticky leaves,

the smallest are the sweetest.


Grown by hands calloused

with use, earth-furrowed:

my grandfather’s green thumbs.


Annest Gwilym, North Wales



Le Chatelier’s Principle (LCP)


Son:All chemical reactions(CRs)

Do not  go linearly!

Do you know that mom!?


Mom: Some times directly do not,

Combine Reactants to produce desired product .

Yes ,I understood this fact,

from my dear science teacher .


Son :Reactants do combine ,my mom!

And settle at their equilibrium,

Reactions work both ways,
Products to reactants,
And reactants to products,

Where present is certain amount ,

Of reactants and products at any time.


Mom: Due to external parameters, variations ,

Like Temperature(T),Pressure (P) and concenteration ,

CR at equilibrium gets disturbed sometime;

LCP guides CR at equilibrium,

To act in such a way so as to  keeps its ,

Equilibrium constant  Keq, constant immortal every time.


Son: Oh yes! LCP  is principle that serves guide lines,

For how will adjust a chemical reaction –fine,

With the equilibrium thrown off balance at time.


Mom: ,  My son, LCP can be represented ,

like, A-diwali lamp , diya earthen.


Son :Yes I know that mom!

Earthen lamps light, remains steady and still;

And make new equilibrium  every time ,

When  external change like T,

And P comes in their way,

To eliminate darkness in the world,

And show  light to every one,

To see free and calm nature.


Mom:In a way LCP-is guide line/light ,

Like an Earthen diya light,

For millions CR/passerby it’s a guide,

Every time showing, life leans toward stability,

Even if  we are in fearful time.


Dr.Sukarma Rani Thareja, Kanpur, India

 (Poem written as a teaching aid to students)



Showcase March 16 5


Hospital Dying


When death comes near in a waiting room


It will not be hot, knife-instant, pulsing

With indifference;


It will not be cold, help-distant, slipping

In unnoticed.


It will not be brazen, pistoned, slamming

Through, refulgent.


It will be warm, comfortable, hand-held,

Doctoral, scrupulous,



It will be well-prepared, expected, classic;

Timed, systematic,



Who needs to comes and goes –

Nurses, Priests – rostered,

Advice and sofas, leaflets, close.


But still that bastard.


 Michael Docker (UK)


Accelerated HorrorShowcase March 16 6

The news of the day

tries harder and harder

to shock us

with horrible events,

progressively straining

boundaries of morality,

some crimes so terrible

terrorism seems more natural

by comparison,

since at least we understand

the nature of hate.


Gary Beck, from Ignition Point (USA)


Sixty-FiveShowcase March 16 7


It might be Hecate’s there

long-lost, a friend

lurking round the corner

waiting to greet you

crazed as the aura of fizz

of sparkly vision,


but then

who’s to say

and anyway,

which is most real –

the buzz of pen-on-the-page

of a writing-spell,

or an eye-chase

over another’s word music,

when under illusion it’s as though

that text is your own?


Whatever  –

words can


jump and


off the edge

of the page, can



and over


into Life.


Julie Sampson