There Were Things I Did Not Know – Lois E. Linkens

my latest piece on Whisper and the Roar, as part of the ‘I Knew My…’ collaborative series!

Whisper and the Roar


There were things I did not know (could not know).
There were words I was yet to write, a still
Small voice, yet to claim. ‘Tis life’s greatest thrill,
To light an unknown match, and watch it glow.
I would do great things. I would swing my feet
O’er fences, walls, tall gates to walk amid
The places I had never seen, and bid
Farewell to my young self, to future meet.
Places that could hold me fast, scoop me out
And fill me with their beads, their jasmine ways.
Here comes tomorrow in its dusky haze.
I have seen the future; she’s ours to sprout.
Where so much is known today, I decree
To stay a great surprise, most so to me.

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Oracle – Eric Syrdal & Lois E. Linkens


Pariah! They say
with open eyes but shut mouths
I can hear the gnawing between my bones
it rests like poison honey on their tongues
like a promise, the vanishing point of a dark road
anathema laid upon my brow while I was sleeping
in this waking dream

 I see myself all sandy olive brown

A smudge in gold dust, damp but for dark leaves

Like feath’ry mother arms. I am restless,

A young Soul scraping bare

For love and comfort as children’s hands in

Honey jars. I crawl, dusty kneed and 

Heavy-headed t’wards the Gods.

 I stumble and fall
no arms to catch me in this concrete jungle
no high priestess in the high-rise penthouse
to cup my chin at this silicone confessional

The ground does wake,

Ears like white billowed sails — and hear they do,

A pearl voice soothes my blotchéd cheek. Good

Smoke, light and fresh as fruit fills this sunken soul.

Atë — Atë! Fair fallen goddess girl,

With sour brow and feet like deer. Curse her

Jet stone heart with tools of fear! 

But, how could the voice of a goddess speak through me?
how much longer should this exile be?
If I lay prostrate on this linoleum floor
what sacrifice can I offer, which a broken heart can afford?

Curse you, with your opal eyes —

My black grief ne’er shall be your wretched prize.


[Be sure to check out more of Eric’s work at My Sword and Shield. It was a pleasure to write this Grecian-inspired collaboration with him.]

She would the small Swift be-Lois E. Linkens

my newest post on Sudden Denouement:

A Global Divergent Literary Collective


It was a late night when the notion came;

Black and atrous in the dry car park.

Night was cruel – weekend smelled like beer and dark,

A mouth-organ’s growl ran as nuns in shame

Behind her heel, music and love like red

Syrup oozed through her white gold flesh. ‘Kind sweet

Abandon – here I sink my thirsting teeth

Into thy bitter lemon starlight, said

To tell us  – close and fragrant – of our gloom.

My word – how I am stuck in this life’s cement!’

She wants to watch the Osprey, awful claws and

Black-tipped wings abeat to topple Doom,

The horrible slicing of silver flesh —

Puccoon drops t’wards foamy throes, Death’s velvet

Smalt does seduce the coy in brilliance

She curiously craves. Still, as the Osprey fight,

She would the small Swift be; ‘Oh tireless Swift,

Who sleeps in flight, thy burnet body quick


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give blood


They had kind faces I was pleased to trust,

Pleased to give. (Cold water, cold water – cold

In the warm room where everything is blue

Or very red.) Blue plastic seats like hard

Curved clam shells, bodies in soft tunics like

Nursery walls. A cherry face, wispy

Grey curls: ‘I tell you, my dear,’ she muses

O’er my punctured flesh. ‘I didn’t know what

Day it was this morning!’ I saw my face

In the glossy ladybird sat on my

Fingertip. That was a strange joy – so quick

And full and soon to fly. My dear life’s blood

In nine minutes drained; my neighbour in five.

Fast blood was hers, like sharks. But slow or speed

Both new life give, old love save, as we bleed.

to the lake at Coombe Abbey


I ask, if thou might know, to tell me plain

From whence did man so cloak from that disdain

Past which we seldom reach – to welcome see

With bright eyes the celestial shape of thee.

Of such, there is no answer in my breast.

Inclined, I do admit, to think it jest

And thus await the snatching of the rug,

Its green-gold grandeur vanquished with one tug.

But oh! The whisper’s true, the heat and breeze

Does brush my skin. The shimm’ring bended trees

Do stroke the glassy blue; the regal swan

And goose find rest. The sparrow here, then gone.

But ‘tis the heron, mighty Zeus of Coombe

Whose wings like bellows o’er thy face do loom.


Just Released! Anthology Volume I: Writings from the Sudden Denouement Literary Collective

sudden denouement’s first anthology is out now! a lovely collection of writing from creative minds across the globe.

A Global Divergent Literary Collective

The Sudden Denoument Literary Collective is thrilled to announce the release of Anthology Volume I: Writings for the Sudden Denouement Literary Collective!  This long-awaited anthology is a thoughtfully curated compendium of the best writing published online by the Sudden Denouement Literary Collective from its launch in August of 2016 through April 2018. It includes 138 pieces of cutting-edge poetry, prose and short fiction written by 29 diverse writers from England, Romania, Japan, India, Finland, the United States and Canada. Thirty-one of the 138 pieces were written exclusively for the Anthology. This volume captures the astonishing raw power of these individual and united poetic voices.

Now available on and

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peregrine eggs

Wingèd machine, grey as winter dawn, does
Edge over old royal bones. Both tired,
Hallowed – still as morning. See – one stirs,
Eager black pearl eyes awake with joy
Attend the morrow’s young; as do sleepy
Red ones. Four shapes were ne’er so brimming with
Death and life – bloody streaks of sweet struggle,
Yearnful presses at life’s door like beggars
On the midnight street. It is dark in here,
Under this skin of yours. But they want out –
Come, small creature, into the cold where we
Are lost on you, as pale summer roses,
Like apple blossom, pink and trembling – down
Like white confetti, white as innocence.

I had a bath Slave

See the source image

I had a bath Slave. Sweet, good-tempered Fi,
With skin as Butter in the English heat.
Her touch as feathered down; ‘tis odd my heart
Did swell than times I would my husband meet.

The still warm waters of the gild goddess
Did often cleanse me of mine wrongful blush.
Dawn’s young light would find me as I wept,
And begged and prayed these songs of love might hush.

I scratched her name on lead. Up came the breath
To meet my plea and down it went, my sin.
Her blood would spill as water does,
Clear as diamond, lifeless, dull as tin.

‘Tis better for to hear Minerva speak
Than after fruitless love to desperate seek.

I love to hold your eyes in mine, like hands

Image result for couple abstract painting

I love to hold your eyes in mine, like hands.

To count each blink and keep mine very few.

I see myself, a pale pepper-pot girl

Who made a home within the sight of you.


I love to hold your hands in mine, like jewels,

Skin as cotton, brown like rum. Warm as June,

I would I’d wear you through the yellow months,

Take you off on white wintry afternoon


To have you by me. Darling, think we thus;

We are milk and coffee, cream and rum. Oh,

What a mix of luxuries, what great wealth

Does mingle when this trembl’ing close we come!


I love to touch your face to mine, like birds.

A gravel nest atop a city church

Does seem a sweeter home than that in which

Our hands and skin are pulled beyond one hair.

‘Tis mine own selfish Soul that thinks it fair

In asking – for your Heart, I would so dare.

Extended Week — Special Call for Submissions: Exploitation of Women

submissions for work based around the exploitation of women are welcome on Whisper and the Roar…

Whisper and the Roar

The Whisper and the Roar Collective is extending submissions for one final week covering all areas of the global exploitation of women, from May 27th to June 2nd. We are accepting poetry, prose, fiction, personal narratives, and essays on these topics from around the globe. We are looking for writing that makes us feel, makes us think, that moves us. 

The categories we are seeking include:

Domestic Violence
Sexual Exploitation
Female Infanticide
Acid Attacks
Child Marriage

To Submit:

  • Send up to 3 pieces of original writing in either PDF or Word document attached to an email that includes your real name as well as the name you publish your writing under.  Although we prefer previously unpublished work, we will consider published work as long as it has ONLY been published on a blog. You must own the rights to any work you submit to Whisper and the Roar
  • Include a brief biography that includes a…

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