City of Departed Dreams

Forget Paris, forget Venice, forget Rome... For me, the most romantic city in the world is Liverpool. Dreams of long-departed emigrants hang in the dockside air; ever expectant; awaiting transportation to the New World. I can almost hear their chatter on the docks. Maybe it's from the many visits to the Maritime Museum as a... Continue Reading →

The Night We Talked

Do you remember that night, the night we talked? It was a fine and starlit night. Somewhere backstage, a salamander sounded the depths of the night, his mating call a sonar probe, rebounding and marking out the limits of our world. We didn't need a territory greater than this, delineated by his echoing mating call:... Continue Reading →

The Dustbin of my Dreams

After so long waiting, I had finally arrived. I had coveted the dustbin for years: stainless steel; easy-clean; antibacterial. Best of all was the footpedal which meant you would never have to touch it, except to take the bag out. This would be contained within an odour-eliminating, sleekly streamlined plastic capsule. The insanitary sanitised once... Continue Reading →

Suicides Anonymous II: New Girl

She stood at the front of the class, waiting to be introduced, though 'thrown to the lions' would have been more accurate. She had shoulder-length hair which was thick and cut without care, dry at the ends and mousy brown. Her frame was thick also, and her gait awkward. In short, she didn't stand a... Continue Reading →

The Elemental Eve

She is coiled, tense like steel, before it was ever forged in the minds of men. She bites her tail, symbolising eternity. For an eternity she has been here waiting, and is waiting, still. She has been here far longer than mankind, and this alone would be reason enough to blame her. Her skin is... Continue Reading →

Medusa, or The Older, Wiser Woman

I used to turn heads, when I was younger. Sometimes I even stopped traffic. Every building site I passed would elicit a course chorus of wolf-whistles and catcalls. Now I have a different power, to turn. I used to be always out in the sun, loved the feeling of its warm rays on my bare... Continue Reading →

The Tide

I. The Walk Here the Solway, in its sweep towards the sunset and the Irish sea, begins to widen. Here the sky is an impermeable grey, the gently rolling slopes of Criffel, on the far side of the bay, etched in high contrast to the cloud. Silloth is a town perpetually looking back, as if... Continue Reading →

Parallel Lines

This is a short fiction about grief and loss that I wrote after losing my sister. The details in the story are fictional, but the depiction of bereavement and my reaction to it are real. I caught the train by seconds that morning. My sister was already on board. I missed the train by seconds... Continue Reading →

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