All copyright © 2003 remains with the authors.
All copyright © 2004 remains with the authors.



he was
getting old
very old
very very old
nearly oldest old
soon all that
there will be left
sadly will be
and song
and the odd
london marathon
occasional decathlon
and possibly maybe
writing poetry.

patrick mcmanus 7am
raynes park -london


we talk about beasts in winter
or breasts for months in heat
but today's ions rattle the hinges
and wings belly under wind

sleeky clouds, white pointers
nothing holds when a sky streaks
wind eats up thought and spit

Jill Jones, Sydney, 5.00pm


First you're in a corner - soft and warm,
interesting pattern on the carpet,
could study it all day (after which there's
the skirting boards ), then someone
steams in and drags you out, maybe
your lover or your maiden aunt, leaving you
in the middle of the Axminster, awestruck,
blinded by the glory of an Osram bulb.

Norton Hodges, Oakham, Rutland UK ,17.09.03. 9:10 a.m.



The lizard licks the air
then darts to its crack -
large limbs loom & crunch -
the air of leggierezza
when the hubbub has passed.

Martin Walker


While reading

There would be no pepper for Budapest, pesto in Bogota, no rutabagas in baggage. There are no words for rage, color for clear, seeds in bananas, and no sound in sleep. Consumed, I began cleaning; as a portrait of moments flicking out a drifting life, a lake, an edited reality skidding time upon our time until everything was cool, brilliant and bold; forms would curve careers as coffee urns flooding over with flavored antacids. While reading, there would be moments for a soundtrack and applause. There would be money hiding in roadway rest stops in those nothing corners wearing wool disillusionment socks keeping warm.

Geoffrey Gatza, Buffalo, NY 6:05AM


The Feral Pigeons at Auburn

Auburn! wasn't that the name
of Goldsmith's Deserted Village?
'Auburn, loveliest village of the plain.'
Forgetting it was all about decay,
some home-sick migrant
Irish land developer
hustling by the Yarra,
succumbed to his nostalgia
and named you Auburn.

Auburn, unlovely village
by the Yarra, Goldsmith
were he writing now might envy
your prosperity,
patronised by the sorority
of the race-going community
who flock here to the shopping-
drag with three milliners in a row.
Millinery! millinery! millinery!

Auburn Road is such a plod
as I search for cheap dog-food
past edifices 'Erected
1891', and no wonder
my poor old feet feel tender,
and my ditto heart dejected:
my credit card's rejected.
And how so?
on a dog-food merchant's say-so:
please do not ask for credit
as a refusal may offend.
The cashless economy
stops short of the brothers' granary.

My admiring eyes dwell
on the well-fed pigeon squad,
twenty- or thirty-odd
that forever pertly patrol
the corner citadel
of Murphy Bros Grain Merchant
and bulk dog-food agent.

And so I'm lamely loitering
with ambivalent intent,
though Murphys' granary is full
while brilliant birds are pottering
and cooing and canoodling,
strutting the brick battlements
and the concrete nether regions.

O successfully scavenging pigeons —
sustained by the Murphys' spilled
seed, spilled (o sons of Auburn)
on the ground, the barren ground —
your hearts have not grown old.
No hungry generation
treads you down, you pigeon nation.
Away, away, my card and I
will delight some other merchant's eye.
Care to offer me a quotation?

11pm, 17 September 2003
Max Richards, Melbourne


too grey a morning
to think clear
beyond the snow
too early seen

I think I'll go
put on a parka
throw my hands in the air & whine

or an anorak
for the rain
now falling perhaps
in Britain

Douglas Barbour, Edmonton Canada 08:23



from particles
borrowed forms
a poetic mind
a white poem snaps
perfected line
singes time
blind flames gather
a Phoenix of verbs
flip, snip, spin - leaves turn
the noun

Deborah Russell, 9-17-03 10:18 am
Baltimore, Maryland


Taste Them

Do not add them to your memory
of word shapes.
Taste them. Taste them.
such as
applique, embroidery, batik, pigment.
Do not swallow them.
Let the lips maneuver them.
Let them lie on the lips,
but do not bite them
Let them wallow wallow wallow.
The taste will be the surprise.
What will be swallowed
will be sound.
the memory of sound,
the unheard noise of sound.
Applique, embroidery, batik, pigment.

Harriet Zinnes
11:54 a m.
New York City


New Morning

it is good to begin with poetry, water the garden, taste some
coffee, play a few notes on the flute, B sharp, G
the wild flowers

Frank Parker


Dewthick yes
night you are
and long only in dreams leaning
against the black walnut tree you
hear my words World could we
wish for more?

3:20 am, West Irondequoit, New York, USA Gerald Schwartz


too tired -I say- to write a snapshot and anyhow who'd care,
mine isn't theory, or rare game, mane of -Ada or ardor
á rebours- that is how it should have to be due

from now to the start and then all the way through
to undo and redo and try and once
always without gain

the house demolished -rebuild- the book read
she is tired why should I make her read more
lack of lore in the dark - a bed - downtown

anny ballardini 10.30 pm - bozen, italy


Daily Life

Marianne Moore cut the line from her revision of "Poetry":
"Beyond all this fiddle."
I can intuit why: the lady,
when she wasn't at Mets games
or buying funny hats,
must have shopped at Jersey malls.
Monmouth County is all fiddle.
We await with almost excitement
the hurricane that probably will not come.
Some will be disappointed if it's only rain,
not the ewige vernichtung of a Cat5 killer storm.
My car needs a brake job.
The dentist botched my root canal
and tomorrow I shall give her a chance
to finish the job.
These are things of no moment.
Even now they are of no moment to me.
I browse displays of hammered dulcimers
and dream of the celestial sounds
that drown out the click of failing brakes
or the sickening whirr of the drill.
Fiddle indeed.

Kenneth Wolman


are you that one
of gravity's most
timothy aria,

recording your one cricket self tonight as if I lived near
a field of green gone full amber
sleeves lightweight some other fabric not reminders
of wool necessity, how apple limbs will
droop to ground, autumn--

are you that one,
tiny hop-quadraprints,
delicate crooked
& comb-toothed legs,
walking off unreadable
longer nights as if new

to the drumming gulf-sky rains--

are you that one, toeing a course
along vacated garden mounds
impressionists' carrot,
potato, jicama beyond the warm
patio stone--

clear-wide-eyed, oh you!--

is it you?--
dressing up for a night
of out-right body cry, sing:

or somehow is all that still very north--

granted: daily moving closer,
simple, cold--

we could not know
what code to make then kissed
instead for the lank of winter self

where you wedge or rest in the year's
lone hollow, cedar linger
& shavings,
scatterings on the loose
floorboard, penultimate
you in the shiny

anchor round of balance, wood stove,
its fourth magnificent, round weight of silver foot--
are you that one?

chris murray, Dallas TX, 18 Sept. 2003, 1:47 a.m.



darkness closing in
yet still so still
soft so soft now
we're wrapped in velvet
contracting discretely until
we're in its tight
grip as if inside
an old cold stone

Árni Ibsen
september 17 - 11:30 p.m.
hafnarfjördur - iceland


Poetryetc is a listserv relating to poetry and poetics which provides a forum for poets to debate their critical and creative work. The list has over the years run a number of projects for its members, of which Snapshots has been the most enduring.

Every Wednesday, Poetryetc members were invited to post short poems on any subject or in any form they chose. The idea was to make a poetic collage of instamatic “snaps” of that day that reflected the international membership of the list. The project has generated an astounding number of poems.

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