Black Petals Issue #107, Spring, 2024

Editor's Page
BP Artists' Page
BP Guidelines
Mars-News, Views and Commentary
(After) Life is What You Make It: Fiction by Richard Brown
Gauche Cuisine: Fiction by Gordon L. Stewart
Here's to Forgetfulness: Fiction by Roger Johns
Insights Into the Trajectory of Human Cetacean Communication: Fiction by Andre Bertolino
Mal Ojo: Fiction by M. N. Wiggins
No Dark: Fiction by Bill Dougherty
Overtime: Fiction by Dennison Sleeper
A Cut Above the Rest: Fiction by Roy Dorman
Resemblance: Fiction by James McIntire
Sign of the Times: Fiction by Liam A. Spinage
The Attic Party: Fiction by Michael Fowler
The Renovators: Fiction by Hillary Lyon
The Balance: Flash Fiction by Rick McQuiston
Bawk Dark: Flash Fiction by Michael C. Jessen
The Incident With the Mismatched Man: Flash Fiction by Charles C. Cole
Radio Tower: Flash Fiction by Blair Orr
Take Me With You: Flash Fiction by Steven French
Slippery: Flash Fiction by Cindy Rosmus
Where Dead Babies Come From: Poem by Nolcha Fox
302 Asylum Avenue: Poem by Joseph Danoski
Another Story: Poem by Joseph Danoski
Home Repairs: Poem by Joseph Danoski
A Creepy Leap Year: Poem by Kenneth Vincent Walker
Funeral Memorial: Poem by Kenneth Vincent Walker
BatGrl: Poem by Casey Renee Kiser
Twin Flame: Poem by Casey Renee Kiser
Shadow Play: Poem by Simon MacCulloch
Dark Ride: Poem by Simon MacCulloch
Leviathans of the Void: Poem by Christopher Hivner
Sunbursts: Poem by Christopher Hivner
Into the Eyes: Poem by Anthony Bernstein
Airtime: Poem by Peter Mladinic
Gloria: Poem by Peter Mladinic
The Sorcerer: Poem by C. Walker
Frozen Eve: Poem by C. Walker

Simon MacCulloch: Shadow Play

Shadow Play



Simon MacCulloch


Night has edges, moon a sickle

Lasered bright from disc of nickel

Darkness cut from vinyl glints with stars

In between the buildings, alleys

Sink their clefts, unrivered valleys

Deepest of the dreamless city’s scars.


As you walk they trail behind you:

Shadows where the streetlamps find you

Scissored sharp, discarded on the way

Every one a self part-finished

Simplified, maligned, diminished

Actors in an ever-running play.


Thus the cuts and thus the paper

Readied for the midnight caper

Midnight, when the razored cast-offs meet

As an alley gapes to snatch you

Letting all your shadows catch you

Cut-outs tight-accordioned down the street.


Here in blackness, packed within you

Bitter selves will twist and spin you

Dance you mad with unfulfilled desires

This the price of never dreaming

Mind’s potentials crammed to screaming

Crave release that sanity requires.


So throughout the sleepless city

Thoughts inflamed and eyeballs gritty

Men composed of shadows flit through trash

Till the skyline’s bleak serration

Carves a grudging, smudged salvation:

Dawn, to burn the paper souls to ash.




Simon MacCulloch lives in London. His poetry has appeared in Reach Poetry, The Dawntreader, Emberr, The Chamber Magazine, Grim and Gilded, Aphelion, Ekstasis and others.

Site Maintained by Fossil Publications