So, This Is Christmas

Your mouth’s stuffed with tinsel;
it bristles in your throat,
just as glitter cakes your eyes.

Holly scores your forehead
and you lose crowns on the
secret flaming sixpence.

You’re becoming obese:
heart’s wreathed in goose fat.
Fairy lights cable your ankles.

Quick, open a window, taste
the frost, be a mistletoe friend,
a mulled, spiced berry.



Ben Banyard lives in Portishead, where he writes poetry and short fiction. His work has appeared in Shortlist Magazine, Sarasvati, Snakeskin, The Stare’s Nest, Ancient Heart, Nutshells & Nuggets, I Am Not A Silent Poet and Fry Your Friends.




A Satsuma for Ann Sansom

Instead, I bet you got a Terry’s chocolate orange
in your stocking. But hey – at least this year the snow –
like Bing’s dream – was deep and goosey, and the moon
was full, and when the sun eclipsed it on the twenty first –

it was Solstice – not Christmas, shepherds, flocks, the First
Nowell – and it was shot deep red like a blood orange
in the morning sky. The park was deep, crisp and even the snow
was brighter, whiter than the sulking, brooding moon.

On our street it soon waned to just a paring – dulled, mooned
itself over the sun on the 4th January when it returned it’s own first-
in-the-year eclipse, biting out hot flesh like a segment of orange
and the park was dimmed and  tried to remember the melted snow.

The magi maybe came and went, but it came back, the snow,
just the day after, and with it the new we-will-rock-you moon.
Quick – take down flashing santas, snatch a mistletoe kiss, and first
eat up each slice of stollen, stilton and that Terry’s dark orange

before we can out the old, bring in a new moon,
welcome new epiphanies of snow. I’ll give you this satsuma.



Sally Goldsmith is a singer as well as a poet. Her pamphlet SInger was a winner in the Poetry Business Pamphlet Competition and she was commended in the 2012 National Poetry Competition.  Smith/Doorstop published her first collection Are We There Yet?