The tide has turned its face

from the shore, once more

the herring-gulls feed and quarrel

on the luminous mud

where lonely boats, abandoned and still,

wait, listening for the sound

return of the sea that will come

like the end of a journey.


Upright figures that stand on rocks,

the stranger who digs

for bait or for something he has detected,

the hopes and fears which are his alone.

The rose-blush of air enters

the bay on this invigorating day,

sand-ribbed and rubbed grains

peel away time, a flight of sky

seen before the rolling mist returns

again to listen for the marooned and mysterious cry.






Byron Beynon lives in Swansea, Wales. His work has appeared in several publications including London Magazine, Poetry Ireland, Worcester Review (USA), Poetry Wales and Written River (USA). Recent collections include Human Shores (Lapwing Publications, Belfast) and the The Echoing Coastline (Agenda Editions).




















The clerk sells my son a bed

            then looks my way and says,


so this was your mother. I begin

            to wonder if something living has


slipped from me as I walk through

            mazes of lamps and video chairs,


lakes of foam bedding. And there's

            the orange-glow hearth, suggesting


that old palliative, a family circle

            at which point I step aside to check


my hair in a mirror. I tilt this way and that

            but find not a glimmer of her, only more


color-coordinated groupings; my glass morphed

            to space I poke my head through    into


a slick new sofa-world deep as pie on the other

            side—no face for what was once the smile


of a woman.





Katherine Soniat 's  seventh collection, Bright Stranger, is forthcoming from Louisiana State University Press in spring 2016. The Swing Girl (LSU Press) was selected as Best Collection of 2011 by the Poetry Council of North Carolina. A chapbook, The Goodbye Animals, recently received the Turtle Island Quarterly Award. A Shared Life received The Iowa Prize. Poems have appeared recently in World Poetry Portfolio #60, St. Katherine Review, Hotel Amerika, Prairie Schooner (Waterfusion), storySouth, and Connotations Press. She was on the faculty at Virginia Tech, Hollins University, and now teaches in the Great Smokies Writing Program at UNC-Asheville.      Website: www.katherinesoniat.com

















Cirque des Cercles

Like a vein of gold, you left me
in the center of forgotten, still to miss
the rise of trivia. Alleys blotted
with dusk’s red trifles. Yet it wasn’t the
swaths of cinnabar collapsing in the fireplace
that stilled us. Bright prisons followed us
everywhere— except when we needed
them most.

The cirque des cercles on the
stitched rug are openings to an underworld.
The longest darkness. Creatures forming
from the demon’s molten feet in the eons
after Damascus appeared above the earth.
An age of whale chant rising like slabs
on the strand. But the day’s first child
cries out the simplest man’s name into the sky.
Such a mind; a gateway to the clouds.

Perpetual reiver, break me into timelessness,
for the will perseveres in its completeness
rather than its fragmentation. Then the moon
leaves off and the rug swallows down remnants
of gold and bone. The deepening of essentials.
Promenades swathed in dawn’s great monument.
Left alone in unending expanses of pitch-white
freedom— even when we needed it least.
Because I was always your slave.
And you were always mine.






 Richard King Perkins II is a state-sponsored advocate for residents in long-term care facilities. He lives with his wife, Vickie and daughter, Sage. He is a three-time Pushcart nominee and a Best of the Net nominee and has had work appear in hundreds of publications including The Louisiana Review, Bluestem, Emrys Journal, Sierra Nevada Review, Two Thirds North, The Red Cedar Review and The William and Mary Review. He has poems forthcoming in the Roanoke Review, The Alembic and Milkfist. His poem “Distillery of the Sun” won second place in the 2014 Bacopa Literary Review contest.