Cyphers Magazine


Publishing poetry, prose and art since 1975

Category: Poem

The Geologist In Lockdown

By Nell Regan Shanganagh Cliffs The last great melt is scored through each layer of these cliffs – these shelly drifts below our home, cut clean by the knife of the sea. I scan for sun bleached stone, delivered from a desert long gone, find a speckled piece of the Firth of Clyde but my […]

REED BUNTING Emberiza schoeniclus

By Mary Montague REED BUNTING Emberiza schoeniclus: from a sequence after the species’ singing styles (2) I Sing Me To More Myself I begin in the dark / as I began in My / own dark unformedness / making a syllable / after a syllable / after a syllable / which is the kind of faith / […]

Red Camellias

By Seán Lysaght I saw you this morning when a shaft of light shone on the red camellias just after sunrise. I recognised the lipstick and a kind of shy emergence from the hedge-depths where they sheltered. The poplars were already applauding the main parts of the day to come, wind and sun, and a […]

Light is what days are made of

by Moya Cannon Light is what days are made of –it pulls the daffodil up out of dark earth,prompts the eagle and the stub-tailed wren to nestand draws the humpback whale north with its song. Stones, warm on the morning sea-shore, know it.Our sun is so much older than them –such tempests of grief it […]



By Nell Regan The rooks that rise above the serried ranks of homes augur unease as though soil itself has not settled, knows not what memory knows (or what the body recalls and expects) except come spring: when a nudge of weed and wild flower show through, a ghosted version from below. At each roundabout […]

Grey Heron Is Not A Hood Ornament

Grey Heron Is Not A Hood Ornament

By John Kinsella The twelve-footer outboards in from the bay, its ingress watched by gulls and the odd jogger. The sea’s a glasstop, so the chevrons from the boat’s passage tamp the harbour’s walls. On its prow, a grey heron, still as sculpture, staring down the man tillering the motor. His haul under wraps. The […]

Her Last

By Breda Spaight My mother, forty-five – another child, opens the door to Nurse Begley, all smiles and too much pine air freshener. I had forgotten how beautiful her face is, rinsed with innocence, like she’s brand new, as though under a spell. And her hair like a moonlit lake – black with silver ripples. […]

Two Fabulists

By Andrea Ward One doodled wolves in margins and spelled them in scrawl so urgent that they tore life-size from her copybook, padded between rows of pupils who turned back to see the fire door spring open, who pressed against windows to watch the pack lope across the sports field and around the gym towards […]

O’Neill, Shelley, Prometheus

By Lawrence Dugan Her paper to a dozen of us, a lady From Texas before the MLA at last, Quoting O’Neill’s characters remembering Their days at sea. So she should have, for who Better to feel the vastness of the sea At night than a teacher from the southern Plains, able to toss aside the […]

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