Starry night over the Rhone, by Jonathan Beale

Starry night over the Rhone
by Jonathan Beale

The clock is now sleeping….
Time is absent here. That uninvited guest, is away.
Socrates sits in silence, on a distant bank
(Invisible to you and, I) unable to fathom.
What or why is going on.
his sophisticated words: now dumb.
He can reason not the need.
I paint in a joy from my window’s frame.
As they experience their human pleasure of
Touch, they feel each other mingled with the night.
The city distant city: blind and far enough away –
Those wedding guests who stay too long.
Encapsulating a beauty of its own (hopper never pasted this way)
As the light dances a demonic reel
The bluest blueness projects the mood
As only black can everywhere else.
The sodden waters edge’s
Handed over from the mornings
Silver woven tidal cloth
…of what, what are they doing, or have done.
A quiet dyad under the stars – becoming…something enchanting.
Momentarily awakening to this…
strange trinity of which I’m an invisible fraction.
the gentle ripple of the tide
cradling the delicate dinghies
time is absent there, but not here
a moment grabbed before, before, before…
they can feel, touch and be one, once more
can I capture that moment of joy?
time will awake again soon….


By Vincent Van Gogh Sept 1st, 1888

Jonathan Beale is published in numerous journals around the globe he is most recently published in Bluepepper, mad swirl and ygrilsil. He has one volume of poetry the destinations of Raxiera published by Hammer and Anvil. He lives in Surrey U.K.

After Goya, by Jonathan Beale

After Goya
by Jonathan Beale

From still life: ‘Pieces of rib, loin, and a head of mutton.’
Francisco de Goya. Musée du Louvre.

The once learnt: now gone.
Deeds are done and form to dust –
That “when” – when youth is too young
Led easily by any anthems dream
Ringing out a hollow heartless tune.
Their always beating black hearts at work
They live between the lines.
Behind the actions dead weight:
Now this deadweight leaving life for the few –
Still steering freight for the butchers block.

They find this tripartite game
Impossible from field to abattoir to butcher
As the weighted cleavers chops the blood and bone –
The pure rain so easily washes this unholy mixture away.


Jonathan Beale is published in numerous journals around the globe he is most recently published in Bluepepper, mad swirl and ygrilsil. He has one volume of poetry the destinations of Raxiera published by Hammer and Anvil. He lives in Surrey U.K.

Borrowed Poetry

Red Wolf Editions Fall 2019
Theme: Borrowed Poetry

Poems often are in dialogue with other artistic works. That makes us a collective. Things become interesting when there is a two-way street. As poets we read other poems, we consume movies, plays, music, various art forms. These things can be a springboard for our own thoughts and creativity. It’s something I do as well drawing inspiration from other experiential forms.

Just for instance riffing off lines from another poem.

We Are All Voyeurs

“The world is ugly/And the people are sad.”—Wallace Stevens

I read a couple of bleak poems that reeked of
cheap perfume. Mostly amorous crap.
Some guy who peeked through the wall saw
a woman take off her clothes, then kissed
her husband, then put her hand inside his
pants. They engaged in coitus, I think.

Me, I’m sitting by a bay window, looking at
the spreading branches–morning had broken
and the sunlight warmed my soles.
I’m slowly coming out of my shell
in the pine-scented air, portentous.
I combed out my voluminous hair.

The allure of woman, I think, lies in
some mystery–butt cheeks shifting under
maroon panties, for instance. She held up
a white blouse, like a veil. I thought about
God–where is he–nowhere here, not in
this seedy low-life, not this pageant.

Then I thought, tremulous, that search for
light must begin in darkness. Swirling
colors that begin to emerge into beauty.
Who held the brush but the artist
who is all body, and soul, when
in service of something so ineffable.

The lines in the first stanza references Mark Strand’s poem “The Way It Is.” The original Mark Strand poem reads:

My neighbor’s wife comes home.
She walks into the living room,
takes off her clothes, her hair falls down her back.
She seems to wade
through long flat rivers of shade.
The soles of her feet are black.
She kisses her husband’s neck
and puts her hands inside his pants.

In this issue we’re looking for these two-way streets. We borrow ideas and lines from another. No artistic work is a closed shell. You crack open the shell and the egg oozes out. What does your eggy consumption feel like? That’s what I’m interested in. Do you fry it sunny side up or poach it or turn it into a fancy omelette with mushrooms and so on? What is your experience of it?

In terms of borrowing ideas, you may also make your poem into some sort of response to another artistic source. This happens quite easily. For instance, after watching a movie, you may want to write about it. After listening to a piece of music, you may want to reference it. After viewing a piece of art or performance, you may want to tell the reader your perception of it in a poem. What are the things you’d highlight, that had struck you somehow?

In terms of referencing, you could do it in a deep essential way or you could do it quite casually–a quotation or whatever. We can be stretchy when it comes to definition. Make your poem an aesthetic response of sort. If life is about experience, your poem would be an aesthetic response to what happens in another aesthetic portrayal of it.

Anything can be borrowed. Borrowing isn’t copying. Please don’t be a skunk and plagiarize. You have to make the poem your own. Please clearly credit your source.

Read our submission guidelines here. Please check back on our site to see if your poem has been selected. We will not be sending out any rejection letters.

Submissions period: March to August 2019. Selected poems will be posted on this site and compiled into a PDF release in Fall 2019.

Irene Toh
Fall 2019

Time Is A River Without Banks: Ekphrastic Poetry

Time Is A River Without Banks Ekphrastic Poetry Edition1

We are pleased to announce the release of the Spring 2019 Issue.

The poets with work in this Ekphrastic Poetry edition are:

Misky Braendeholm
Adrian Ernesto Cepeda
Tim Dunne
Alexa Findlay
Christopher Hileman
Nancy Byrne Iannucci
Diane Jackman
Mary Anna Kruch
Sarah Law
Betsy Mars
Joshua Medsker
Michael Minassian
Debi Swim
Robert Walton
Martin Willitts Jr

You may download a copy of the PDF release here.

Ekphrastic Poetry Spring 2019

You’re invited to submit to our new issue. You may find us over at the new site at Red Wolf Editions. Happy writing!

Ekphrastic Poetry

Special Thematic Edition 2018/2019: Ekphrastic Poetry


Marc Chagall, Time Is A River Without Banks

My grandfather had a clock.
It flew–the grandfather clock–through
the air, over the river, over the lovers,
over the blue. As it now bridges
time to memory, it’s as ersatz
as memory goes.

So we have another pastoral.
What heaven would have been if
it’s a place with houses and steeples,
and being vociferous with love,
we will look affably upon the
poetic idiocy of a winged fish

playing a fiddle–so music carries time
(ah, aphoristic wisdom), as do souls
like gypsies wandering into the other
before first memory turns opaque,
before the stealthy boatman comes
and takes you far away.

(by Irene Toh)


You’re invited to submit ekphrastic poems for our special thematic edition.

“An ekphrastic poem is a vivid description of a scene or, more commonly, a work of art. Through the imaginative act of narrating and reflecting on the “action” of a painting or sculpture, the poet may amplify and expand its meaning.”

Read more here.

You are encouraged to write to a series of ekphrastic poetry prompts over at our sister site, Red Wolf Prompts.

Please do include in your submission the painting or photograph that inspired your poem. The photograph may be your own or belong to someone. If it belongs to someone, be sure to give credit. You may send in as many poems as you wish.

Read submissions guidelines here. Please note that the reading period will be in Jan-Feb 2019 so do be patient to wait to see if your poems are selected for the issue to be released in March 2019.

Submissions open from September 2018 to February 2019. The issue will be released in Spring 2019.

Waterloo Bridge: Effect of Sunlight in the Fog 1903 after Claude Monet, by Alan Catlin

Waterloo Bridge: Effect of Sunlight in the Fog 1903
after Claude Monet

By Alan Catlin

Dull blue
grey night

in the after

a blistering
ripple of water

by sun;

in the mist,
human shadows

formed, remain


Process: During a three and half year period I wrote little else but poems on Art ranging from Turner to extreme forms of Modern Art.

Alan Catlin has published dozens of chapbooks and full length books of prose and poetry on a wide variety of subjects. His latest forthcoming chapbook of poetry is from Night Ballet Press, Beautiful Mutants. He is the poetry editor of the online poetry journal