|This Time Last Year||
At first we didn’t hear the Fates
When the owls carried his name
Is a man’s life no less precarious than that?
He phoned us,
|One Step Beyond||
I didn’t know you until I was in my thirties
first name terms. I remember our first words
I knew you were a bit bloody weird then,
You even said: “It looks like him, dunt it?”
It was Yorkshire empathy at its best.
but what could possibly be appropriate
Since then, you’ve done my mum, neighbours, an old school friend,
I’ve even dreamt about you in your black suit,
to One Step Beyond, like some cockney grim reaper.
you’ve been far too busy
One day, you waved at me from your hearse –
who’d known each other for years.
but can you just pretend you don’t know me?
Larnax, embossed with a perfect celestial star,
Within the quiet chamber, delicate diadems
Silence. Gold and ivory couches, silver ladles, cups,
She waits for her guests, deep in the underworld,
Purified by fire, great King, encircled by weapons: his sword
When they break through, centuries have stacked in the gloom:
Dream Catcher 31 is particularly rich in work that takes us across that line from where we are comfortable, to another place, sometimes one which feels not at all familiar. One of the joys of poetry, of fiction, is how they can both turn the world upside down, or create new worlds, as well as casting a sideways glance at the world we have. We have Andrea Bowd’s The Loud and the Dead, Philippa East’s chilling inversion of the TV game show in The 2000 Calorie Man, Emily Drew’s excursion into the world of zombie memory, and, less edgily, Sam Kemp’s conversion of the writer’s stock in trade, words, to currency.
We have included sequences or groups of poems which reflect an author’s continuous engagement with a subject. We also have Marion Ashton in New Orleans, David Cooke in North East Lincolnshire, and Ann Heath in Not Barmouth. In each case a real location is used to step off into other places of the mind.
Through our partnership with the art gallery According to McGee, we have the stunning black and white photographs of Ros Garland both on the cover and through the magazine. Ros’ photographs are from the 1970s and ’80s and represent a world that has largely disappeared and these images remind us of a world that is largely lost.