Poem of the Month September 2012

Momodou Sallah
Momodou is currently a Senior Lecturer at De Montfort University and teaches Youth and Community Development. Whilst most of his other writings are academic in nature, Momodou has been writing poetry since the tender age of 13 and sees poetry as a release mechanism and a social canvass. Momodou grew up in The Gambia and now resides with his family in Leicester, UK.

Life goes on
The fire in my belly is flickering
And the dreams and illusion conflate to bite me
Powerful men strain my future at the stroke of a pen
It is a funeral
Silence leads to internal bleeding
And shouting is but a bullet out of a gun
I must find equilibrium to remain sane

In this labyrinth of an abyss
I have no sense of direction
I feel sick and dizzy
 From the many fast and sharp turns of the drivers
I just wanna close my eyes
And end this pain.

I have invested myself wholly in this holy project
I inject myself with daily marathon sessions
And reinvigorate myself with Al Qaeda torture sessions
I am no slouch sofa revolutionary
And have treaded the dreaded trek
There is still fire in my mouth
And fire in my head
But even elixirs
Can no longer sustain my fuel consumption rate.

Rise up and shine
You are the son of warriors
You are beyond definition
Your destiny was written in the stars 444 moons ago
Let little people worry with little problems
Feed on the cosmic energy
Drink from Poseidon’s well
Draw from Mother Earth
Put your head down and take the first step.

There can be inner peace
Tranquillity that conquers melancholy
Oppression is a double edged sword
That strips away the humanity
Of both the victim and the victor
This high speed concrete jungle obliterates the power of humanity
Let your humanity be touched by the simple things in life
And absorb the meaning of life
Let your stranglehold on the big picture go
Let the ego be level with the ground
Let Mother Earth be your shelter.

Take a deep breath and enjoy the summer
Lie on your back
And lick the cosmic dance of the sky and clouds
Don’t shout, shsss, listen
Let your rage against the self and system go
Harness your tongue,
Draw inspiration from the children
Listen to the heartbeat of the universe
Do you hear the rhythmic pulsation of energy?

We're scouting for YOUR work at WORD!  - next one October 2012

Poem of the Month April 2012

Mike Brewer is retired. He is a former President of Leicester Writers’ Club and former Chairman of Leicester Poetry Society, having poems in all four of the latter’s anthologies. Served on the Committee of  Swanwick, the Writers’ Summer School. Has had poems published in various slim volumes, including Iota. He first performed at “Word!” in April 2009 and keeps coming back.

Having a Domestic with the Missus

the unlawful death of kizzy may bradley  

there was a noise of a struggle in the big house kitchen
and then just silence that nothing was breaking
when master tom Allen his words slurring whiskey
called up a close friend about something quite risky
who promised to come and then turned up quite briskly

and found kizzy may Bradley lyin dead on the floor
and though nothing was certain
one thing was sure
she wouldn't be reading the good book no more

the coroner accepted a tumbler of whiskey
and then mumbled about what could and what might this be
wrote cause of death ACCIDENT in bold black letters
with a silver tipped pen in his coroners notepad
then pushed up his spectacles and picked up his briefcase
and bidding tom Allen goodnight got back into his motorcar
and drove back to town with his headlamps unopened

as kizzy may Bradley lay dead on the floor
and whilst nothing was certain
one thing was sure
she wouldn't be house keep in that house no more

master tom Allen owned a cotton plantation
with a hard taste for whiskey and a gambling reputation
held schools in his parlour for friends and acquaintance'
and he hated to lose and was powerful impatient
and earlier drunk had weaved into the kitchen
on his way to the study to draw up some papers
to settle some deeds on a debt he was owing
lost to a neighbor in one hand of poker
only a small loss to a man like tom Allen
but who hated to lose and was powerful impatient
caught kizzy may Bradley in the act of her stealing
two silver spoons she was shining and cleaning
and whatever else she was hiding in her deep apron pockets
and stealing was stealing and there's duty to stop it
the act of this theft that might never have been discovered
and perhaps another time she might even have recovered
cranial damage cracked skull and concussion
but reasonable force warrants no deep discussion
and clear in the right faces no repercussion

and kizzy may Bradley who was a mother and wife
and who never stole nothing the whole of her life
in the big house kitchen now lay dead on the floor
and whilst nothing was certain one thing was sure
she wouldn't be singing songs to her children no more

We're scouting for YOUR work at WORD!  - next one May 2012

Poem of the Month March 2012


Washed up in his studio, she posed
a question: 

deconstruct, or reinvent
warp the mirror’s point-of-view

blur reflection, skew perception
change the angle, challenge pre-conception

carve in driftwood, stick-thin
pliable as willow wand

collage, button belly
cut-out mouth, spaghetti blonde

sketched impression
scribbled hair, charcoal suggestion

lens-shot, urban backdrop, contours Photoshopped
a decade younger, neon bright on monochrome

mapped in black and blue
pen and ink tattooed

features fractured to abstraction
spatter-painted scarlet onto canvas with abandon

signed original, kept for private viewing, his
tongue reading consent between the lines of lips

We're scouting for YOUR work at WORD!  - next one April 2012

Poem of the Month February 2012

David Devanny was born in Bradford in 1988. He is a member of Bradford's Beehive poets, a graduate of the Warwick Writing school and currently studying for an MA in Writing at Sheffield Hallam. David is a poet and illustrator and helps run the independent poetry publishing house The New Fire Tree Press.

the people of the light
after The Time Machine - H.G Wells
we r
i’m quite sure
the morlocks
n we have come 2 eat u
of all days
was the time to manicure
ur fine hands
u want to go out
with a bang
dont u?
n they will look gr8
when u r
my grubby flaxen hair
oh yeah
we r the morlocks
n we have come 2 eat u
n i do hope
u played in the sun
light in the water
falls n danced today
because we r the morlocks
we have risen from the ground
we have come with the night
n we have come 2 eat u

We're scouting for YOUR work at WORD!  - next one March 2012

Poem of the Month January 2012

Cleo Henry

I am currently studying for my A levels in sixth form, so my poems are testament to my lack of worldly experience. However what i lack in life-time i try to make up for in imagery. I have written for many years but have only just become aware of slam poetry at all, and from what i have experienced, I love it. My poetry tends to be focused on glorifying my generation, but it also shows my love of religious paraphernalia and the New York rock and roll of the 60s, despite my cynical 21st century outlook. 

If I Should Have A Son

If I should have a son
I will tell him that the title of 'man'
is not gained through age
but through arms that can old a thousand trembling villages
and shoulders that should the sky fall
will support it's bruised and troubled head
and still ask the meaning in the constellations of it's tattooed back
because son,
the night is yours to fill
with the Bible you weave of it's punctures
and the stars sing of sin as well as sainthood.
You must build your weapon of nebula
because pen or sword
the cosmos bows to neither.
Yours are not the wrongs of your ancestors
but their blood is in you
just as the olympic torch is Prometheus' fire,
the chimera's breath licks our elbows
and we stand on Atlas' shoulders still,
dropping coins into the void
and waiting for the splash.

And son,
you will have days when you wake up from flying just falling
and the gritty rain wipes it's moist fingers on the window
and even though you are flying down a motorway and the world is throwing acapella beats at your windscreen you still feel stagnant.

But when Jesus Christ looks into the churning fan
like he's turning in his grave
and the sticky-fingers lenses pockmark
potential front page martyrdom
in his wedding-ring eyes
and 60 watt wonders
and he says 'This isn't what I meant at all'
show him that your arms are those of a man
and even though your tongue is numb
from licking the curb once to many
you can still taste the sweat of salvation
and see the solar-system in your cereal.

Click your heel over the heads of heroes
and join the cry of the hound-dogs and the hippies
the bedroom drag-queens and the high-school sweethearts half a globe apart,
the beautiful sisters and the silent brothers,
the lonely nobles and holy beggars,
Joan of Arc and Mr Darcy
because these are our people.

Walk with pyramid sand between your toes
and suck the Sanskrit from your lips.
See every limb in Michaelangelo marble
and give your love a Tudor rose
because you're going to be fine.

It's going to be fine.  

We're scouting for YOUR work at WORD!  - next one February 2012