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The Fringe Poetry Festival Two











Published by SeaQuake Books

Copyright 2015. Individual contributors.

Shakespir Edition, License Notes


This ebook is licensed for your personal enjoyment only. This ebook may not be re-sold or given away to other people. If you would like to share this book with another person, please purchase an additional copy for each recipient. If you’re reading this book and did not purchase it, or it was not purchased for your use only, then please return to your favourite ebook retailer and purchase your own copy. Thank you for respecting the hard work of these authors. Publisher contact: [email protected] Contributors contact: www.facebook.com/writinginsouthport








A perfect star

It was a perfect star, not fallen

but washed up


on the beach,

stranded half way between sea and sand dune.

I stared a while, savouring sweet strawberry ice.

Sorry to see it

stuck there,

burning out in the sunshine.

Up above, alive and free,

dozens of dazzling coloured kites dipped and dived, whooshing as they went.

Spiralling, spinning, ripping downwards through warm, salt scented air

before breathing a moment on sandy beds, ready to rise again.

My brother found a forgotten key.

I prised the rough relic from his sticky, smaller palm, imprisoned it in my own.

He cried

until we started to build the city.

It took forever to carve out countless windows.

Then, as it stood resplendent in shells

we crowned it with a feather.

When Mum said it was time I nearly forgot

to scratch a keyhole in the castle door with the leftover lolly stick

and, while my brother wasn’t watching, I laid down the key

so that another star might see it and stay there safe

until the sea came back.

(Anna Mills)


She Shouldn’t Have to Wait

“I’ll die in this room, shan’t I?” mother asked.

It startled me to know she knew I’d called.

She named her favourite flowers. I stood appalled

By drips and pans and tubes, my feelings masked

From all-day-smiling nurses, who were tasked

To restore life to patients who lay sprawled

In high-tech beds -while Nature’s engines stalled.

“How wonderful is death; in vain I’ve asked

To let his soft hand break this strand I reeve…..

Set wide his gate to Nothing. Please make plain

That when I’m gone, wrack and pain go too.”

When dogs in busy traffic leap and weave

We’ll harm them if we frantic shout their name:

Then why call her? She bravely wanted through.

(Mike Parsons)

Sunday Afternoon 1967

Cerise peaks of Angel Delight

stand to attention in stainless steel

dessert dishes. Mine is achingly close,

forbidden until the last curl

of egg and cress is consumed.

I anticipate the sprinkle of hundreds

and thousands; watch their colours seep

into soft edged rainbows.

We’re ordered to eat slowly with a teaspoon,

our budget doesn’t run to large portions,

I can’t help myself and it disappears

in a staccato of metal and metal.

I slyly lick the bowl, forgetting

that mothers are all seeing;

the single second helping goes to my sister.

I vow to hide her favourite doll.

(Steve Beattie)



Washed Clean

Baby clean, haloed by the

Pink haze of disinfectant,

Hair capped back,

Face blank.

I’m marked with the sign of the cross,

The place where the knife enters,

Cuts through bone and nerves.

The surgeon said the scar will be ‘this big’

Stretching his hand, wide as it would go.

My unblemished skin mourns

Dancing frocks I will never wear.

Blue hospital nightdress folded

At the end of my bed,

Balloons into life with

Frayed white tags,

Mimicking modesty.

Three hours until theatre,

This is the unknowing time,

A dubious bliss of ignorance.

On waking I will be told

News I cannot

Refuse to hear.

Trees wave outside my window.

One nurse told me you can hear Blackpool Zoo;

Cries carry both ways by the wind.

(Jacky Pemberton)



A Knock on the Door

In retrospect it was nothing but

the first warning stroke of the brush

starting but not completing the cross

At the time however it seemed

more akin to the thundering rake

of cannons in full destructive force

Then came rush and bustle and control

followed by an unexpected awakening

to an electronically guided existence

where facsimiles of those early waves

from which our ancestral life first sprang

Charted the current viability of living

The gradual release from that unscheduled womb

led me to this marginally different world

where taking for granted is no longer an option

(Bob Eccleston)


We hope that you enjoyed ‘The Fringe Poetry Festival 2’. For more information please go to www.facebook.com/writinginsouthport.




Other books from the same publisher include-


The Fringe Poetry Festival One.

The Fringe Poetry Festival Three

CQEC Journal, Inter-Agency Working

One True Thing

CQEC Journal, Regeneration in the North West

The Fringe Poetry on the Move Three

The Fringe Poetry on the Move Two

The Fringe Poetry on the Move One

Darren and George

The Fringe Poetry Festival Two

'The Fringe Poetry Festival Two' is a pamphlet of poetry from poets based in the North West of England. It is distributed in pubs, cafes, libraries, shops, buses and trains. In fact, anywhere the public may have time to read some interesting pieces of writing. The pamphlets and ebooks are published by SeaQuake Books. The idea behind the initiative is to bring poetry to a wider audience. The poets included in this particular pamphlet are Anna Mills, Jacky Pemberton, Mike Parsons, Steve Beattie, Bob Eccleston

  • Author: SeaQuake Books
  • Published: 2015-10-16 13:20:06
  • Words: 824
The Fringe Poetry Festival Two The Fringe Poetry Festival Two