Reflections on Incwadi

The second issue of Incwadi is now out. Or would that be up? What is the correct term for an online journal? Any ideas?

Anyway, for those who have not yet discovered it, Incwadi is a lovely new online journal of poetry and photographs. The first issue appeared in October 2009 and it is expected to come out twice a year, in Autumn and Spring.  Kudos to the editor, Ingrid Andersen (herself a fine poet) for putting together a wonderful collection of words and images. I hope to see many more issues.

On a personal note, I was honoured to have two poems in the Spring 2009 issue . The latest issue contains one of my poems,  Reflections, along with work by poets such as Gary Cummiskey, Isobel Dixon, Finuala Dowling, Michelle McGrane, Kobus Moolman, Dan Wylie and Fiona Zerbst, to mention but a few. Why not visit the site to see who else is there and enjoy the poems.


New Coin

New Coin 45 (2), December 2009 is now out.

This journal of South African English poetry contains poems by Mari Ballott, Brett Beiles, Paulette Coetzee, Gail Dendy, John Eppel, Genna Gardini, Dawn Garisch, Basil George, Peter Horn, Anton Krueger, Liam Kruger, Ryan Eric Lamb, Carol Leff, Brent Meersman, Wanda Miles, Mandy Mitchell, M Soga Mlandu, Sabata-Mpho Mokae, Kobus Moolman, Tendai Mwanaka, Andile Ecalpar Nayika, David Priilaid, Dudu Saki, Ben Schermbrucker, Luisa Soares, Marelise van der Merwe, Megan van der Nest, David wa Maahlamela, Lindsay Wagner and Earnest Zitha. In addition there are reviews by Marike Beyers and Moira Richards.

To subscribe, purchase individual copies or submit poems for future issues please write to Up to six unpublished poems can be submitted. I am working on the June issue at the moment and will make final selections at the end of February. Any material received after February will be held for the December issue.

I include three short poems from the December 2009 issue:


on moving house

if only I’d taken up a
hobby like kayaking,
or flying a light aircraft;
instead of collecting books…
you know something easier
to pack up, not as heavy.



silver lining

a silver lining hovered
above the campus lawn and trees,
small figures passing to and from town
in the distance

above the colonial clock tower, edging
military battlements,
it snagged on size and shape
then floated free

(blowing out smoke, watching the dark clouds,
snagging on metaphor, I tried to write a real bright
shining silver nogal lining shining so brightly
no-one else noticed, I swear)



The Love of Trees

It was my grandfather
who taught me to love trees,
bending over my pram
under the great boughs.

“Right up to the top” he’d say,
pointing with work worn hands,
that later would hold mine
across countless streets,
write invisible maths equations
on the kitchen tablecloth
and build bookshelves
to hold future knowledge.

“Right up to the top” he’d say,
and the words filter back
in shafted sunlight
through the green.