you have found your way here from an old link.

You can search here to find things or browse by category or post.

You can also visit the IS&T archive

The archive is a separate site formed from all the posts from that original Ink Sweat & Tears website, it consists of everything we have published up to the end of 2019.

Recent posts

Mariam Saidan

    The Cost of Living after Deborah Levy His hair was not silver and not pinned into a bun. I’ve been reading it over and over. Obsession over something harmless must be a good thing. It’s a book, safe, I’ve been told. A woman saying things I like to hear,...

read more

Matt Alton

    Homing I My mum used to say that when she died she wanted to come back as a well looked after cat.  Two weeks before, for Christmas, I bought her a cat onesie.  We assumed she would be spending plenty of time on the sofa with our tabbies – enough for the...

read more

Robert Garnham

      Cutting Through The tea-light flames would dance as if a modernist ballet were being staged in each of the glass dishes from expensive supermarket puddings. He had dotted them around his ground floor flat, on various pieces of unlikely furniture...

read more

Josephine Balmer

      Shadowtime Romney Marsh, Kent, February, 1287 That night a slice of moon rose, mottled red like a scratched wound. The sea was torched, wind-charged. We heard the tide roar twice across the Marsh and knew it was here, the hour of the dead. Hulls...

read more

Chris Cusack

      from: Seize i. I fear my poor old soul may be a fixer upper. I strive to find out – it’s that forensic streak I have, I suppose – by too often drinking on an empty stomach. There’s a view afoot, I think, that a proper soul needs proper seasoning....

read more

A Poem from Fahad Al-Amoudi, IS&T’s Next Editing Intern

  6am in Bole airport (after eight years) The inevitability of currency changing hands; multiples of six just momentarily effervescent, reprise! reprise! reprise! Everyone’s face looks like a clock at a certain hour; delirious in mid-applause when you hear your...

read more

Mick Gidley

      Home Front For days after the children leave for their homes in the South we discover unexcavated battlefields, nonsensical as Towton. Small formations of infantrymen guard the lower book-case shelves, lone snipers lurk behind the curtains, and...

read more

Alison Cohen

      Roses The postman was my friend, rang the bell, wouldn’t leave until he’d reached me, handed me broken stems of roses — thorny with their heads at crooked angles, buds that tried but only turned to rusty paper. They’d found you by the postbox...

read more

Isolation by Richard C. Bower

Isolation by Richard C. Bower Settle me With a restive hand of congregation One that makes me sit back and think again Offer me a chink of light As opposed to the consumer society With its dreams that end in ruined plight ... As I walk on/I realize How subordinated...

read more

Paul Stephenson

      Voicemail Sarah is away next week so would like to speak to me today if it’s convenient and not too much trouble. She wants to go over some of the finer details and explain how things will generally go from here. Sarah needs to check she’s...

read more

Zoë Wells reviews Mither Tongue by Jidi Majia

Mither Tongue – A love letter to translation Parallel translations always bring a certain kind of joy. I have fond memories of reading Pablo Neruda for the first time, original text on the left, English translation on the right. Feeling out the Spanish sounds out loud...

read more

Olga Dermott

      Seagulls They would shred morning open from 3 a.m, jangling keys in their beaks, an hour after the last scatter of drunks had sung their way home. Every layer of black plastic flayed, pavements strewn with rot, the week split open like the belly...

read more

Adrian Slatcher

      Miss Blackbird Good morning bird I hear a blackbird in the morning I hear a blackbird in the morning Sat out eating my breakfast I see a blackbird in the morning I see a blackbird in the morning Gathering sticks and twigs I smile at a blackbird in...

read more

Emily Wilkinson

      Coffin Road Boots and minds pound heavy up the steep grassy track. We speak of how many men it would take to shoulder grief’s weight, pale with effort and the thought of body within box hauled high over stone, ground and mud. It is hard enough to...

read more

Josie Moon

      from Ache After the world ended A rain of fire woke the night. Under blazing umbrellas a rat-like scurry ensued. Dawn rose bleak; the sun eclipsed by a black ring, a circle of surprise. From the sky came a red mare riding the clouds, descending on...

read more

Sam Wilson Fletcher

    Kingley Vale Down the chalk track slick as soap. Wade the long grass in the meadow, bludgeon swinging, bag of stoats. Rabbit in my fingers squealing, into the grove of the gods I go. Old gods. Half-dead and never dying. Sucking needles, spitting berries....

read more

Dominic Fisher

      Thumbnail sketches Look how it all goes pale when you pinch, and floods with rose as you let go. That dot is probably not a planet though, too big the curved sky too foggy. Possibly a snowy evening a chalky moon has risen east of a cold mauve...

read more

Helen Sheppard

      Hair Growing up in small towns hairdressers offer crew cuts, curlers, wigs in severe bobs. In cities my fuzz is flat ironed, acid straight, topiary trimmed. In cosy bars, strangers clink pints on our table. Sweep sweaty palms across tips of my...

read more