☛ Submission for October, 2024 issue (Vol. 5, No. 2) is going on. The last date for submission is 30 September, 2024.

The Hand of Glory


The Hand of Glory

- Bob Beagrie (U.K.)


It’s a scorcher

in mid-September

seven berries dangle

from every branch

blood stains for the end

of a sacrificial summer

but the 5 o clock shadows

betray the season

the way they sprawl

too early, too tar-black

across sun-paled roads

the way they pool

in potholes and pockmarks

race harvested stubble fields

skritty-scratty like Fred

Flintstones’ chinny-chin-chin

It’s all Sex on the Beach

It’s all Slippery Nipples

It’s too bright, too dried

and crisp to go tee-total, or

keep your eyes from squinting

the lids drooping like berries,

lashes locking to stop

your darkness

from leaking out, to resist

sipping from the spring

of slumber and sink into

its pool and while

you wallow some scally

equipped with a hanged man's

severed hand plucks the giddy-

golden leaves as if they

were Doubloons, sovereigns

Threepenny bits, hearts

and other nostalgia-riddled

tokens gone by the bye.