Mark Czanik

The Willow’s Song

The willow is weeping.

She weeps for her sisters,

and a pool is fed by the tears she sheds.

The pool feeds a creek that flows to the ocean.

Oh, the ocean is full of her treasures, she said.


The rain is falling.  

It falls on the hillside,

and a girls stands where the willow once stood.

The girl finds a street that’s lost in the city.

Oh, the rain is full of her treasures, she said.


The wind is calling.

It calls at her window,

and her hair is spinning like beads on a thread.

The thread hangs around her in the heart of the city.

Oh, the wind is full of her treasures, she said.


Darkness is calling.

It calls for the dawning,

and the moon is full, but her eyes are red.

She tells you her secrets are lost to the darkness.

Oh, the darkness is full of her treasures, she said.


Sisters are singing.

They sing for the weaving,

and the corn is turning like a spider’s web.

The corn turns a circle round the heart of the city.

Oh, the circles are full of their treasures, they said.


The willow is sleeping.

She sleeps for the dreaming,

and a pool is fed by the dreams she sheds.

The pool feeds a creek that’s lost in the city.

Oh, the city is full of her treasures, she said.      



Mark Czanik was born in the ‘sweet borderlands’ of Herefordshire, and now lives in exile in Bath. His poems and stories have appeared in Southword, Cyphers, Wasafiri, Riptide, The Rialto, The Interpreter’s House, and many other lovely magazines.

Aoife Riach


I love the freezing stone of you

beyond the rain, your bone damp

raising bristles on my flesh


I only know who they named

you after, eight hundred vaulted

years of grey, you waited for me


Why should you submit to what

they built you for, when my voice

echoes deep into your tombs


Loom over me, pull me inside

you again, they laid all your lovers

to rot within your walls 


Ring out for me, I’ll be breath

in your dead structure, the only

ghost you’re haunting back


Why should we submit to what

they built us for

 ————————————- my hot blood

thumps your every hollow cave



Aoife Riach is a queer feminist witch with an MA in Gender & Women’s studies and a postgrad certificate in Sexuality & Sexual Health Education. She has worked as a writer for BUST magazine in NYC and her poetry has been published by College Green Journal, Nothing Substantial, Sonder, Channel, Impossible Archetype and other magazines. She was a finalist in the 2019 Intervarsity Poetry Slam and was a 2019 Irish Writers Centre Young Writer Delegate. Her poem “Vancouver” was chosen for Hungering, the latest curation of the Poetry Jukebox currently installed at EPIC, The Irish Emigration Museum in Dublin.


Orla Fay

A History of Snow

1982. We waited in the kitchen.

They went to check on a neighbour.

Would they get caught in the drifts?

I fell asleep. The Hamco. The Big Snow.


In school watching out the Georgian

windows for the first flakes,

the surge of excitement when they fell

swept away all thought of work.


The lane was covered with frost,

puddles wore pale faces. We practised

how far we could slide, falling,

cracking elbows, bruising legs.


Making a snowman knuckles and fingers

numb, the mittens gone, socks on hands

searching for a carrot and pebbles.

Wham singing Last Christmas.


Back pinned to a warm radiator in the convent.

The 90s. Nirvana. Carpet coat, navy skirt,

no trousers allowed, tights sometimes,

knee high socks; uniform. Watching breath in air.


The Big Freeze. The ice came in

through the keyhole. The temperature in the car

read -15. A few miles into the journey

the brake pads froze. 2010.


A film of black ice covered the town

after the forewarning of freezing fog

when crows perished, plunging from the sky.

The Morrigan. People fell, casualty was full.


2018. The Beast from the East.

Racing back on the train to get home.

Deer gazed out from the blizzard in the park,

their bright eyes shining. An Cailleach.


The lane was impassable to vehicles,

drifts clung to the ditches and hedges.

We trampled through, ankle deep in wellies,

bringing bread, milk, eggs and Lucozade.



Orla Fay is editor of Boyne Berries. Recently her poetry has appeared in The Irish Times, Poetry Ireland Review, ROPES 2019, Impossible Archetype, The Bangor Literary Journal, Ink, Sweat and Tears, Tales From The Forest, Quarryman and FourXFour. She has been previously shortlisted for The Over The Edge New Writer of the Year Award, The Dermot Healy Award, The Jonathan Swift Creative Writing Award, The Rush Poetry Competition and The Redline Book Festival Poetry Award. This year she was shortlisted for The Cúirt New Writing Prize. She won 3rd prize in The Oliver Goldsmith Poetry Award 2019. Her short story Foxy was published on the incubator selects in April. She is working towards a first collection of poetry. She blogs at

Lorraine Whelan

Somewhere Between Lillehammer and Trondheim

My body rocks back and forth

as the train weaves its way through the lumpy landscape

 of still, wintry mountains in the darkening night.

Northern Norway in early March.


The moon glows as it rises over curved silhouettes.

I watch it from the window.

Bright. Lonely. Silver orb.


The few other passengers in this carriage are asleep.


Then I see another light in the distance:

a curious, flickering, reddish hue.


My face presses hard on the cold glass,

to bring me closer to the apparition.


A huge man is sitting, cross-legged, by a giant bonfire

warming his overgrown hands.

I know it is icy out there.

He does not look up, though I see a half-smile appear

through his unkempt, auburn beard.


He knows I can see him.


I continue to stare as the train trundles

past the isolated, impossible,

lay-by of this mythic being.



Lorraine Whelan is a Canadian writer and visual artist based in Ireland. Her prose, poetry, and art criticism has appeared in Ireland, Canada, USA, Luxembourg and online Her artwork is included in public, private and corporate collections in Ireland, USA, Canada, UK, Belgium, and Australia.

Kersten Christianson

Solar Flare

   -Tracking Mary Oliver’s “Wild Geese”


You do not have to be engaged.

You do not have to sit

in the front row

nodding your head

in approval,


to the uninspired.

You only have to represent

the clickety-clack of your heart,

tap-dancing rain gutters,

solar panels.

Tell me where you’d rather be,

and I’ll draw an X

marking my spot, too.

Meanwhile, the day slugs on.

Meanwhile the sun rides the sky

in a hunched back slouch, filters

60 watts through alder leaves

hanging by a thread.

Whoever you once were,

or will yet become,

the world will bend

to your intensity.



Kersten Christianson is a raven-watching, moon-gazing Alaskan. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing (University of Alaska Anchorage), has authored two books of poetry – What Caught Raven’s Eye (Petroglyph Press, 2018) and Something Yet to Be Named (Aldrich Press, 2017) – and is the poetry editor of Alaska Women Speak.

Belinda Deutinger

Belinda Deutinger Sionann Oil on Canvas 40 x 50 cm




In 2009, Belinda graduated with a B.A. in Art and Design from GMIT, Galway.

She has a certificate in Visual Education from Dun Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design and Technology, Dublin.

What inspires her? Mood, a memory, a feeling, and certain depth in a painting. She is interested in all art forms; good drawing skills and confident use of colour. She loves seeing texture and a certain amount of boldness in a painting. Story telling is important, with room for imagination and interpretation.

Patricia Fitzgerald

The Way of the Dream

The Way of the Dream



Discover inner peace and connect to your soul with the captivating meditative art of Patricia Fitzgerald, Healing Creations. Painted by Patricia in her beautiful old courtyard studio in Marlay Park, Dublin, she intuitively draws on the healing energies of her dreams to create unique mandalas and artwork. “Symbols emerge as if from nowhere, and when these symbols are courted as though they are wild animals in a forest, the symbols slowly begin to reveal their gold as wisdom. I have found the mandala process to heighten dream activity and for me both are somehow inextricably linked. I sometimes paint my dreams into mandalas or at other times the mandalas will initiate dreams.”

Andrea Calabro

A Slice of Water

A Slice of Water



Andrea Calabro is a graduate of the National College of Art and Design, Dublin. She is a visual artist and a print maker. She uses her practice as a lens to challenge and present a narrative that is common to all. The function of an artist is that of a storyteller. It’s a universal story, and in that, she uses nostalgia as a tool to trigger the past of the viewer, and the past of society. Enhancing little things from the every day life, making them more interesting is something Andrea is passionate about.

Sean Fitzgerald

Sean Fitzgerald - Badb Catha - the battle crow

Badb Catha



Sean Fitzgerald lives in a remote area of the North West of Ireland. His art investigates the darker elements from Irish mythology, folk magic, Gnostic concepts, and sacred sites. The resulting drawings are dark motifs which are intricately layered with traditional knotwork and full of powerful symbolism.

He has a book out this year on Hill of Tara Press called, ‘The Last Battle of Moytura’.