Val Bates, Halle Preneta, Alice Curley, Simon McBride

Turning Circles Staring out of my rain-spattered window, I notice the twirling Collie again. I wave. This is what I’ve been reduced to: waving at passing dogs. My smile grows wide as I stare at my phone screen, each person trapped in a box.I wish to reach out in person, soaring. I close my work … More Val Bates, Halle Preneta, Alice Curley, Simon McBride


Rosaleen Lynch

Covid19 Time Capsule Items List (Archive Copy) CV19 test resultQuarantine passRation book (used)Mask filter – DisneyLipstick (unused)Coins & keys (pre non-touch-tech)Family VC photoJam jar of contaminated air – DO NOT OPENV badge (proof of vax)Personal hygiene strawPortable-O2 tapSubstitutions recipesCovid-OASIS membership cardHeadline cutting – LAST NEWSPAPERBaby teeth in Vitamin D bottleMetre beeper (clip-on model)Hand-san (empty)Seeds (pre-flooding)Rusted … More Rosaleen Lynch

Philip Berry

Owning the city I remember the peak, when I could stand here and look down the platform and see only the curve of the track, there was no one, not a soul, and I, I… liked it, wandering the city, noticing details… I touched walls and dry fountains and empty benches, I brushed the ankles … More Philip Berry

Rebecca Patterson

I took time to notice On the second day of lockdown,during my allotted hour of exercise,I noticed a bunch of fresh flowers on the doorstep of a house and thought, oh, how kind. Every lockdown day as I walked, I saw those waiting flowersgradually wilting in their kindness,their fragile presence still bringing joyto all who would take time … More Rebecca Patterson

Xandr Holloway

The Walk The walk from my house to the corner shop means so much now. It’s getting a small amount of normality back to my life. On my way I see few people. Some old friends, some strangers. It’s like normality but if you had kaleidoscopic vision. Everything on the verge of being normal. When … More Xandr Holloway

Dave O’Leary

Our COVID-19 Symptoms We used to talk more when drinking. We used to drink less. And less often. It’s been six days in a row, something not done since our early days of romance and bar going and always kissing and not giving a damn about the world. And look, we’re drinking now, again, out … More Dave O’Leary

Britt Reading

Wilting Inside I am the wildflowers you pickedThat your mother told you to leave for the other little girls to enjoyWilting in your pocketBruised against your thighI do not belong here I want to dig my feet into the earthTurn my face towards the sunListen as the bee whispers his gossipSwish my petal soft skirt … More Britt Reading

Katie Isham

Quarantine Confusion “I’ll get you all the sweets you want!” I shout through the letterbox. “Just stay inside!” I hear her shuffling her walker and picture her settling back down into the sofa groove. Disaster averted momentarily. I exhale. I move to the window, aiming my gaze between the vase of sepia-tinged flowers atop the … More Katie Isham

Ian Croasdell

Untitled Advancing outside for the first time, we met upon a narrow path, with nowhere to step back or aside. Glancing up and then down at our shoes, we feigned an air of nonchalance and quickened our nervous pace. On other days, we’d pause to hold the kissing gates; comment on the weather; stop to … More Ian Croasdell

Kate Rigby

Dying Incidentally in Lock Down There were no exceptions. We had thought to visit a dying man,a non-infectious, non-contagious,non-contentious dying man,swimming up through the oromorph. They are so old, these friendship ties,barely frayed. They bind us still,as his kind soft hands rest on the edge of life. Touch is forbidden, this much we know –the … More Kate Rigby