By: Dr.Wayne Price

I’m living on the river now. Whatever
visits, day or night, can’t stay long.

Rains bring the mountains to me
with or without my belief;

the house I left, door ajar,
is as footloose as they are. 

Somewhere, estuaries 
forget themselves, like sleepers’ 

hands relaxing. Here,
fish like leaves and long

pale leaves like fish drift by,
form by form; their shadows slide

on gravel and sand, remain
distant from them. 

Love, bring me something 
useful if you come. Paper 

for this letter to you, an empty
bottle to send it in.

Dr Wayne Price is a Senior Lecturer in English Literature and Creative Writing. His teaching and scholarship specialisms are in 20th-century American poetry and fiction, and he has published widely in the UK, Ireland, the US and Australia. He has won numerous national and international awards for fiction and poetry and has twice been a finalist in the Manchester International Poetry Prize (2013 and 2014), one of the UK's richest poetry awards. His short story collection Furnace (Freight Books, 2012) was longlisted for the Frank O'Connor Prize and nominated for the Saltire Scottish First Book of the Year.
His most recent full-length publications are a novel, Mercy Seat (Freight Books, 2015) and a pamphlet collection of poetry, Fossil Record (Smith|Doorstop, 2015), one of Carol Ann Duffy's four 'Laureate's Choices'. His story 'Everyone's the Same Inside' appears in Best European Fiction 2017 (Dalkey Press)



A whole morning wasted 
trying to find the house I think 
my dad was born inside. I’d wanted 
to make my way into his village by memory 
(whose memory?), took a cobbled way 
that skirted the burned-out mill, but every path 
led me onto garages or the boards of building sites. 
The only way I could go was down, 
I walked until the cobbles gave way 
to a muddy path salted with white stones 
(or were they grey?) and at a gap in the hedge 
heaved myself up and over a stile, 
the wood shaking under my weight 
like a labrador tries to throw off rain. 
On the other side I could hear water
 inside the field’s edgework of brambles 
(or were they hawthorn?), followed the sound down 
into a knuckle of valley where the meeting fields 
held a stream cut deep and thin through the blonde turf. 
Crouched (or did I sit?) at the bank’s edge 
I put my hands into the water’s yellow beard of foam. 
It was cold as metal, choked with broken, 
rotting reeds; the heaviness of water folding itself 
up and under its own glassy weight. 
All things get eaten from below in the end— 
old footpaths and fallen way-stones, 
pavements, broken pottery and rabbit bones— 
the ground keeping its human secrets. 
I looked back uphill to the village 
that had slipped me like a quick, wet animal: 
its mute terraces, the plain walls closing ranks 
around the house I’d thought my dad was born inside,
I felt lonely for my life (whose life?), never more at home. 

Dr. Mariah Whelan is an award winning poet from the UK. Her novel-in-sonnets was shortlisted for the Poetry Book Awards, won the AM Heath Prize and was an Oxford Poetry Library 'Book of the Month'. She is the Jaqueline Bardsley Poet-in-Residence at Homerton College, The University of Cambridge.  


Owen Gallagher

Boy in a Cape 
You have to imagine the boss in the workplace,
the way he talks and wags his finger
at this worker who daren’t speak back. 
Imagine this worker at home the way he sometimes 
talks and wags his finger at his son 
whose bottom-lip trembles. 
Then imagine the boy crying as his mum tells him 
of a bad man at his daddy’s workplace 
and how the next morning the boy, 
without breakfast, slips into his Superboy clothes, 
tails his dad to his workplace, 
and stands feet apart,
in front of the boss, gazing up,
clenching fists of steel.

Originally from Gorbals, Glasgow, Owen Gallagher lives in London. His poetry has been widely published in the UK and abroad, and he has received awards from the London Arts Board as well as The Society of Authors. His poems have been displayed on London buses, in public places in Ireland and on the Listening Wall at the Southbank Centre, London, during the Poetry International Festival, 2014. His published poetry collections include Sat Guru Snowman (Peterloo Poets, 2001), Tea with the Taliban (Smokestack Books, 2012) A Good Enough Love (Salmon, 2015), and a memoir in verse; Clydebuilt (Smokestack Books, 2019).
Gallagher has won poetry competitions and his poems have been displayed on London buses and in public places in Ireland and on The Listening Wall in the Southbank Centre, London, in 2014 as part of the Poetry International Festival, 2014. Clyedbuilt was shortlisted for Scotland’s National Poetry Book of the Year, 2021.


Nikita Parik
This Mouth is an Ocean

This mouth is an ocean
floating on your tectonicity,
its water now
two open jaws- a shock of skin,
tissue, raw flesh, and now
it has grown 
a lingual muscle that consumes 
the bone below the neck: now all teeth, 
and softnesses, all of language too, 
all awareness is
underwater; all of existence is
a gasping for air.

By: Nikita Parik

Nikita Parik is the 2022-2023 Charles Wallace Fellow in Creative Writing at the University of Stirling (Scotland). Her latest book is My City is a Murder of Crows (Poetry; July 2022). She holds a Master's in Linguistics, a three-year diploma in French, and another Master’s in English. Diacritics of Desire (2019) is her debut book of poems, followed by Amour and Apocalypse (2020), a novel in translation. She is the recipient of the Nissim International Poetry Prize 2020 and was shortlisted for the Rama Mehta Writing Grant 2021.. She has been invited to read her poems at the Sahitya Akademi Multilingual Poets Meet and Sahitya Akademi Young Writer's Meet programmes. Her works have appeared in Rattle, U City Review, The Alipore PostVayavyaThe Bombay Literary Magazine, Bengaluru Review, and others. She currently edits EKL Review. 



A bleak day, but for the pale sun bruising the air
to a colour of wine. Across the street, a yellow
dollhouse on a tenement balcony, & scrawled
across it in red, a little girl’s initials I will not reveal.
But what it all stands for: the same flaring sadness
I felt leaving her house on mornings like this.
I remember the bright days after, the way I leaned
my forehead against the fogged glass door of the train
each morning, undulating along the brief stretch
of the cantonment, where the forest thinned
into a few trees, burnt ground, & a rampart of concrete
and barbwire. I waited every morning to see them
grazing on the periphery: three brown antelopes
I couldn’t name by taxonomy. Outside, soldiers
patrolled the morning with their mute rifles
across welted shoulders. And on some mornings,
I would see one of the three stray & break into
a careless lope, so gently, I imagined the underbrush
rising beneath the wake of its cloud feet must feel
something close to knowing you were loved.
The way I still felt then, towards the end,
as I lifted her brown hand from across
my collarbone, slipped into my poor clothes
in the half-light of the living room, & tiptoed
out of the house into the deepening dawn, before
the morning’s gleaming thumb could snuff out
any small fires we might have divined by night. 

Rohan Chhetri is a Nepali-Indian writer and translator. He is the author of LOST, HURT, OR IN TRANSIT BEAUTIFUL (Winner of the Kundiman Poetry Prize 2018), JURASSIC DESIRE (Winner of the Per Diem Prize 2017), and SLOW STARTLE (Winner of the Emerging Poets Prize 2015).

A recipient of a 2021 PEN/Heim Grant for translation, his poems have appeared in The Paris Review, Revue Europe, AGNI and New England Review, Fulcrum, Rattle, Prelude, The Antigonish Review, and elsewhere. He has received poetry fellowships from the Norman Mailer Centre and Sangam House, and won awards from RædLeaf Poetry India and Toto Funds the Arts.