Under the Weather

He looked up. The cloud which had been following him for several days was beginning to leak. He sighed; this was the last thing he needed. He would turn up to his date soaked to the skin and she would peer at the clear blue sky and wonder why she had agreed to meet such a dripping weirdo.
He had woken up one morning and discovered the cloud balancing above him, bobbing and white. Half asleep, he had made a playful swipe at its middle and felt the moist fluffiness beneath his fingertips. The cloud soon got embarrassing, however, following him all the way to work and into his office. A few of his colleagues had thought it endearing until it dimmed and unfettered a small thunderstorm over his desk. His spreadsheets were ruined and his laptop was scorched.
He began to run everywhere he went, in the hope of losing the perfectly rounded cloud. But it clung to the place above his head persistently; he could not lose it. And now it was about to shower over his date. He screwed his eyes shut in despair.
In the black distance he heard a chuckle. Just as he arrived at the cafe, a rogue ray of sunshine had hit his little cloud. Over their heads arched a perfect rainbow, and the woman was clasping her hands in delight. No-one’s ever brought me a rainbow before, she said. He could only smile and pat his damp burden happily.

Xenobe Purvis


A saccharine sensation, sticky and wet,
the morning on the tip of my tongue,
the night layered across my teeth.

Blue slithers of my eyes water themselves,
from between heavy lids, drip into waking
and find themselves regretful of their venture.

Hair plays at monkey games on my jungled face,
swinging from nose to ear to sky,
and i?
I remain unable to be swayed from the swaying.

Mercedes Dawson

Fan Fiction

When it comes to men in books
Everything’s about sex

They want

Mr Darcy in the drawing room

Heathcliff on the moors

Rochester and his great big


I don’t know
If I ever met Dorian Gray, I’d probably just ask him to tea.

Marjolein Heemskerk

London’s backwaters


In my hideout away from London in N1, I can hear birdsong and smell the sweet burnt coal from the boats. City noises evaporate and nature resounds.

High-pitched whistles and tweets from the birds push away the heights of crowded buildings, and the clouds are visible once more.

All I dream of is here, in amongst the concrete mass, yet so far removed. Urban sprawl conquered by nature’s sprawl. Lapping water carrying cares downstream.

And in the summer here, it is heaven. Only clouded by the thought of a full turn of the clock.

13:00 and London returns.

Alix Land

Sick Day

Discreetly sneezing into an elbow
(always your own)
in accordance with the latest advice
You are the master of cold and flu etiquette
Until, feeling bolder, you remove your cardigan
You forgot about the sodden tissues
stowed in sleeves
now raining to the ground
Your colleagues pretend not to notice
the two-ply chemical weapons you’ve just unleashed
Later they’ll say
She should have stayed at home.

Fiona Nelson