Turn the Wheel – Ali Jones


He marks the year with stones,

feels the fire in trees rising,


when the sky calls up life.

He inhales beneath the horse chestnut,


stands in his father’s footprints,

eyeing the benign branch caught stars.


His mother leashes his hand,

they ride on wind dogs and go hunting


for the best kindling, where hills

are clouded with sheep.


In autumn, leaves throned gold,

he pockets treasures, and watches


the flames recede in the fall of red and yellow,

dry wood transformed in age.


He mounts an iron horse,

flesh consumed with the spirit of speed,


the season carries his skeleton to cage

a man’s soul, while roots travel


down, sinking with winter’s life,

to condense into vital coal.




Author photo 2Ali Jones is a teacher and mother of three. Her work has appeared in Fire, Poetry Rivals, Strange Poetry, Ink Sweat and Tears, Snakeskin Poetry, Atrium, Mother’s Milk Books, Breastfeeding Matters, Breastfeeding Today and Green Parent magazine. She has also written for The Guardian.


Unfinished breakfast – Roma Havers


Cold burnt toast waits in dawn light

for a kettle shriek,

porridge stains hob-tops,

stiff boils emerge into oaty alps,

a lung faints above clouds

as her tongue lolls onto stone tiles;

last kiss into dirt and breadcrumbs,

A rib cracks in a gust of air,

lets out a tire hiss;


the cat flap swings in spring air

and paws tread prints into her snow-flesh,

veins mark snakes and ladders under claws,

purring, its soft head dings at a dead arm

and licks a line from ear to throat,

the wet skin does not move


like a pond where freeze takes hold

and goldfish hang

mouths open, in the glass,

the cat scrapes at the surface,

starved for fish.

One last tear melts down her,

red with life,

and the kettle sings mourning blues.


roma-haversRoma Havers is a Manchester-based poet, currently in her third year of an Drama and English degree at The University of Manchester where she is the Books Editor for The Mancunion and Chair of the Creative Writing Society. She performs regularly at spoken word nights, and events such as Reclaim the Night and UniPresents.