Gerald Durrell


Gerald Durrell

poems and stories 

   scroll down to read poems and stories in our

Spring  Issue

 growing weekly from April 2021


meet the poets and writers

Gerald Durrell



Our first poem for Spring is by Patrick B. Osada







Patrick B. Osada  is an editor and also writes reviews of poetry for magazines. He recently retired after ten years on SOUTH Poetry Magazine’s management team and as the magazine’s reviews editor

His first collection, Close to the Edge was published in 1996 & won the prestigious Rosemary Arthur Award. He has published six collections, How The Light Gets In was launched in June 2018.

Patrick’s work has been broadcast on national and local radio and widely published in magazines, anthologies and on the internet.. 

For more information about his work and a selection of his poetry, visit :

Patrick’s current collection, From The Family Album, is available for purchase from his website.

Patrick B. Osada – A Field Guide for Young Naturalists










This Christmas present from an aunt

soon put me off with its long lists

of microscopes and other kit

a ten-year-old could not afford.


Hankering to explore my world

and study birds and butterflies,

I quickly scanned the Contents page

for simple projects to absorb.


There, in a list of Handy Hints,

I found what I was looking for :

Hang Peanuts from your bird table

and watch for blue tits to arrive.


So, sorting through the sewing box,

I chose black cotton for the nuts

and, threading them through open husks,

in innocence, a trap was made.


Soon bored with waiting for a flock

of small, nut-eating acrobats,

I settled down to kill some time

and lost myself in comic books…


As fierce Apaches stormed the ridge,

the sound of war-whoops filled the air…

these swiftly changed to jabbering

as real life suddenly came clear.


From the garden, fierce chattering :

a blue tit struggled desperately –

trapped by a leg, entwined in thread,

it flapped and fluttered to get free.


With no one close to lend a hand,

I grasped those frantic flailing wings,

shared in its trembling and stark fear,

while scrambling to release its leg.


Somehow my palsied fingers freed

its frailty from the binding thread

and luck, not judgement, played its part

in fumbling this bird’s release.


And so I learnt that actions made

demand responsibility;

then, taking down my blue tit traps,

I went in search of better books…



Patrick B. Osada





Still Life with Feathers by Patrick B. Osada

Owlswood Park by Patrick B. Osada







Alun Robert is a prolific creator of lyrical free verse. He has achieved success in poetry competitions across the British Isles and North America. His work is published regularly by literary magazines, anthologies and webzines in the UK, Ireland, Italy, South Africa, Kenya, USA and Canada. He is a member of the Federation of Writers Scotland for whom he was a Featured Writer in 2019.


Alun Robert – Le Touquet Conundrum



Le Touquet Conundrum









Long train ride from Paris

Third Class standing

lugging two too many suitcases to

Étaples at last.

Long walk through town

over Canche bridge

tree-lined avenues into Le Touquet

cafés, beach, our gîte.


Le Touquet promenade

you and me

thousands of tourists

jostling for spring sun

postérieur on concrete

tepid to the touch

dipping toes into La Manche

caressing, meandering.


Debating dépression économique

little work for those wicked

few jobs back home for the aged:

you and me.

Shall we remain here from Paris?

Will we join a commune?

Can we posture au naturale

in a sheltered corner of Les Dunes?



Alun Robert


The Was My Tomato Patch  by Alun Robert 

Undertones  by Alun Robert 

No Return To Varoşa by Alun Robert 

After Roger Deakin by Alun Robert 









Claire Booker lives in Brighton between the south downs and the sea. Her poems have been set to music, filmed, displayed on buses and published widely, including in Ambit, Magma, The Moth, Poetry News, Rialto, Stand and The Spectator. She was presented with a Kathak Literary Award in Bangladesh. Her pamphlets are The Bone That Sang (Indigo Dreams) and Later There Will Be Postcards (Green Bottle Press). Her website can be found at 


Claire Booker – At the bear sanctuary







old friendships are respected: Attila

is cohabiting with a wolf. Florentina waits

for Boris by the perimeter fence, happy

to crop grass under his blinded eye as he

eviscerates oranges (his favourite fruit)

or licks speciality ice cream made of

supermarket throw-outs. Maria has been

breaking hearts since she arrived – wears her

blunt claws and honey-fur apologetically,

treads the same small circle round the clock.

She once rode a unicycle in tight rings

inside a larger ring. One night in Bucureşti

she sat down bare-faced in the sawdust –

refused the crowd’s adulation. Fellow artiste,

Max, has turned solo; rotates on his huge

haunches and paw-claps groups if he

spots them by the fence. He’s under his own

management now, perfecting applause . . . 


Claire Booker




New Arrival by Claire Booker









Kevin Cahill lives in Cork. He is inspired 
by the stamina and adaptability of urban
wildlife, and flora, and has written extensively
on this subject. His work has appeared
in Southword, Abridged, Wild Court,
The Stinging Fly, Edinburgh Review
and Berkeley Poetry Review
among other magazines.


Kevin Cahill – Two Poems












Who dove down towards

dicings wearing only a size 32D bra,                                                                      

sharply – spikily – triform footwear,

and sporting two sprigs of Brythonic hay

inside a pair of skinny-jeans.


Soft-landing onto the coomb of my hands                                   

turning her hourglass tummy

to the huckleberries, white wine, worms,

all laid out for her rioting in expectation…                                          


one colossal gobble later and only a gloriously

backflipping maggot

bungles about on her excitedly custard-coloured nose.


And if all that’s not enough, well, wearing ass’s ears,        

an old Lamb’s-Quarters I’ve planted

with cabbage flowers, weedstalks, Bumblebee-Blossoms             

and Fog offers her a doggy-bag-worth of eeks!                                                                              

squeaks! insectile shrieks!          

to be brought back to her cold-water flophouse

on the fifth floor of the alder.                                                     


And although the planted Dragon-Fly’s pinafore

I paid for falls open

revealing only mush, although the Fly-Trap                             

is a plink of heads and droppings

and although she is a traditional woman

in the sense of – she doesn’t do dutch –     

she has given me licence to be so much…                            

naked, rain-ribbled,

wearing only my pointed hat, punting my way       

through zombies, dung beetles, skeletons             

breezily, beating the wind on my broomstick,                      

her wind the wings underneath me. 



Kevin Cahill










With a forget-me-not fringe,

with a hand on the hagiographical coat                        


of a polecat, Maria Branwell manufactures cologne                       

from the spray of Jesus’s-Fingers        


pressed in her hand. She is the thing                         

that gets in your eye – the illiterate planet                         


of a teardrop that breeds cats                                                     

crossing their legs at the ankles – rubbing your face


into the churchdoors. Over this piece of greenwood          

the papyrus dustbowl                                                        


of the church-calendar                                        

inundates with activity…                           


and always now, at Gittisham, Queen Camel,     

Gulval, Charlton-All-Saints,                                 


the mitres of stirred-up churchmice              

run up your chair:                                                                     


Maria’s milk-teeth and Sunday bonnet        

pointing at your heart.



Note: Maria Branwell (1783-1821) was the mother of the Brontës. Jesus’-Fingers are a West Country name for the Bird’s Foot Trefoil.




Kevin Cahill


Gilbert White Poems

Gilbert White Poetry Event









Ronnie Smith grew up in the west of Scotland some time ago. He has been lucky enough to travel as widely as he had hoped. He has lived in Romania and now in the south of France where the open landscapes provide much of the inspiration for his more recent writing. A lot of Ronnie’s poetry comes from nature although he also contributes articles on politics and culture to a number of online publications. However, poetry is taking over.


Ronnie Smith – Aground











Stripped of its bark,

in a cold sun.

Stern stuck firm,

roots petrified

by the salt.


Candelabra on shingle

The mystery

of tides, the storm

now a hush

of melting waves.



Ronnie Smith