Tuesday, March 26, 2024

Tuesday poem #573 : Mark Valentine : Old Otherworld Inns



Merry Lion
White Oak
Pied Horse
Bell & Fox
Black Britannia

Pied Hounds
Odd Bell
Horseshoe & Keys
Angel House
Barley Royal

Street Hounds
Railway Waggon
New Head
Black Angel
Swan Kings

Queen O’Bells
Old Junction
New Blue
Red Chequers
Green Prince

Wheatsheaf & Woolpack
Crowned Dragon
White Castle
Green Mermaid
The Jolly Jolly


A Note on the Poetics

I made this piece by jumbling up the names of real pubs in Rutland to create new and surprising names that sound as if they might exist, somewhere.





Mark Valentine lives in Yorkshire, England. He likes second-hand bookshops, vegan food, canalside walks, village hall flea markets and antiquarian mysteries. A chapbook, Astarology, was issued by Salo Press in 2021, and his work has appeared in M58, Reliquiae, ink, sweat & tears, PN Review and elsewhere. His stories and essays are published by Tartarus (UK), Zagava (Germany), Sarob (France) and Swan River (Ireland). He is the keyboardist in The Mystic Umbrellas and the reviver of the Victorian travel game 'Cat-at-the-Window'.

the Tuesday poem is curated by rob mclennan


Tuesday, March 19, 2024

Tuesday poem #572 : Kyle McKillop : Invalid Response



This headache is a life-sized dinosaur play park
fronted by dueling stegosaurus and T-Rex.
Small children race across the headache

to pet spikes, to pose beneath scaly haze.
Voices jumble—a father in jorts
shouts for everyone to squeeze closer

to the headache for posterity,
while a woman wipes a wild face
clean of mustard and screams

for another to climb down off
a smaller, sorer kid. Greasy hands
spill yellow popcorn from a miniature train

trudging its brontosaurus engine
across the headache, and velcroed shoes
leap from safety grating to ground,

a brief freedom from the tyranny of lineups.
In the lot, a poodle barks in a car under a tree,
the sun shadowing fingers of headache

across the asphalt. Family groups break away
now and then to explore the rest
of the headache: the triceratops nest,

the raptor enclosure, the pterodactyls—
how their wings spread, silhouettes
rammed into sky by the steel shafts

sunk into the headache. In the men’s room,
someone has left a topic of discussion
for the teenager who mops the headache,

and at the snack bar, cotton candy
headaches holey teeth. So where am I?
Follow the sign for the pachycephalosaurus,

yonder in a meadow encircled by magnolias.
I crouch there, teeth bared, forehead tilted,
forever glaring at something beyond

my frame of reference. The weight of this skull.
This headache. The blue sky and its white puffs.
They change shade, the first hint of sunset, of sleep.





Kyle McKillop is a poet and teacher with an MFA in creative writing from UBC. His work has appeared in CV2, English Practice, Quarandreams, Sustenance, and his chapbook What I Will Do For Attention, among others. He lives on the unceded shared traditional territory of the Katzie and Kwantlen First Nations.

the Tuesday poem is curated by rob mclennan

Tuesday, March 12, 2024

Tuesday poem #571 : Anna Reckin : Linearity




Top melts fast to heart as quiet as worn silverware: ­– sugar-tongs, butter-knives (sterling, the real thing: faint tang of tarnish adds salt)

Ending sweetly: lotus pinks, indigo, orange lines, on a turquoise background. Faux-fauve, flowing

sillage all-but indecipherable





Anna Reckin lives and works in Norwich, England. She has two collections from Shearsman—Three Reds (2011) and Line to Curve (2018)—and her poems, reviews, essays and translations have appeared most recently in Long Poem Magazine and Tears in the Fence. Her chapbook, Saxifrage, Sideways, was included in Dusie Kollektiv 9 (2020).

the Tuesday poem is curated by rob mclennan