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#3 Welcome to the third instalment of inc. magazine, printing

the words of the Soul Rub Collective like paper don’t come from trees. This issue is a collaborative extravaganza, thanks to the wonderful people that make up the Illustrators Elbow Collective, who are a group of, well, illustrators. Thus a concept was formed, in which we built a dialogue between illustrators and poets alike. The first half of the issue, Poems Pictured, features poems from Soul Rub wordsmiths and friends, which have then been illustrated by the Elbow gang. The second half, Pictures Poemed, flips it round,with the poems written to accompany the illustrations. The Soul Rub Collective is based in London and unites rappers, musicians, poets and songwriters and regularly

puts on events to showcase their work. inc. magazine is a spin off from this, giving Soul Rub family and friends a chance to see their stuff in print. It has been brilliant to see some of thier work illustrated so beautifully. The Brighton based doodlers, Illustrators Elbow, make drawings, books, prints, films, animations, sculptures, photographs, stuffed toys, jewellery, clothes, stickers, and pretty much anything else they can think of. We raise a drink to the ink they’ve spilt for inc. Hopefully all this will get you thinking about the ways we can source inspiration. If not, here are some pretty pictures with words that sound nice. Enjoy!?

Edited and collated by Will Coldwell and Anya Pearson.



Benjamin Bethell Illustrated by Elena Iezzi

The distanced gravy, roast potatoes, turkey, knives, focus, the angles, robust vocals, oceans of fruits, tid bits, cheers this, tidy that, clear this, fabric under hugs, arms around waists, smiles, glasses, chests, dynamics, be thoughtful, be thoughtful, dynamics the varying coldness in each room, barefoot or socked, footsteps, hands, people peopling themselves, people caring for each other, soft voices, quick eyes, the shelves of time around us, each slither of laughter, each mimed relic of before, each time stretched entrance, each word, squashed cushion, snuggled shoulder, each winged glance of communication, building from the inside out, sitting in the air, soaking from the outside in.






Benjamin Bethell Illustrated by Elena Iezzi

Blocks of gold! I held those blocks tight in my hands they weighed like punches in the air or water at night I held those blocks, for hours because it seemed wise at the time they were bigger than anything else I could see at the time so obviously I held them, feet slipping in the blood that loosed itself from all around me.

YOU KNOW Benjamin Bethell

You know, warmness beneath skirts, and solidness in denim, strength under cotton that is all there, and it is not an illusionary idea, it is actually there, I know because, take away the Hollywood films and the stupid magazines and the wind which troubles clothing is still a blessed wind, and the image of hands everywhere is still a strong image.


Gloria Sanders Illustrated by Alice Pattullo

Frugality apparently Sets you free Don’t be disposable with your income, Recycle some I’d like to share with concise care This strange anomaly Count the ways Do me the grace Of finding some financial space Beyond the plastic, Cheque and cash, How drastically the thought can smash frugality into a thousand tiny pieces of eight. Buy It! Spend It! If generous, Lend it! Be carefree with your money, Do origami with it! Whatever you do, don’t save it, Don’t be a slave to it, Embrace depravity when it comes to your stash.


Anya Pearson/Illustrated by Rosie Gainsborough (previous) Very pleased to meet you, I’m Anya from the Agency, Engaged just for the day for every possible contingency Your first reserve, your plan B, a TA with a CRB, Name label stickered so it’s easy to remember me, Though if you’re busy, “Hello?” or “Agency” is fair, A loved child has many names - it’s nice to know you care. When temping, it’s tempting to mention I’m attempting To keep my temper tapered in tempestuous surroundings When temping, it’s tempting to mention that while temporary, I do not actually evaporate and reappear when necessary. So it’s down the corridor, first right and through the double doors Which swing both ways - just like contractual employment laws Flexible, disposable, insecure and cheap, It’s not a dodgy bungee jump, it’s how I earn my keep. So I understand you’re busy, and I know you’re glad I came But “Hello?” is normally just a prefix to my name. When temping, it’s tempting to mention I’m attempting To keep my temper tapered in tempestuous surroundings When temping, it’s tempting to mention that while temporary, I do not actually evaporate and reappear when necessary. I’ve heard many pearls of wisdom in this world of Oompa Loompas That I shouldn’t comfort children without voluptuous ‘bazungas’, That screaming “STOP!” repeatedly at an autistic boy is fine An excellent repellent to his low mosquito whine. And halfway through the power hour with thirty minutes left, The boy who’s been ignoring me just turns out to be deaf. When temping, it’s tempting to mention I’m attempting To keep my temper tapered in tempestuous surroundings When temping, it’s tempting to mention that while temporary, I do not actually evaporate and reappear when necessary. The end’s in sight (you’re right, not quite - of course I’ll wait til four) Why should you sign my timesheet til I’ve swept and mopped the floor? I’ll fly the dog, I’ll walk the kite, I’ll do anything at all you like Just let me lead your signature along my dotted line tonight Like queuing at the docks for work, we’re nothing but a rental, I may only be a temp, but I think this system’s mental.

lea f)

IRE S Ra p




by Ro s




t ar







TA N ie D G


(o ve r

ST A or ou RT gh F

Me n you girl we could go far unite by the light of a burning car and I don’t really care who sees I’ll hide your face from the cctv and we can lock balaclavas give it up to the night get lost in the darkness take a waltz through the carnage share a last dance on the city rot carcass girl, you know you’re looking so fine that bat you’re rocking send shivers up my spine I wanna see u work it girl shatter that glass till it glitter like pearl lets obliterate peace fire in the dancehall fire in the streets fire in the heart of the beast fire in the touch of your hand on my cheek let’s let’s let’s let’s

go go go go

out out out out

and and and and

start start start start

fires fires fires fires

girl, me n you, on the evening news just picture it i’ll keep you close with locked fingertips and hold tight to the force that your fingers grip and we can bonnie and clyde this shit and turn the world gold on a midas tip and i’ll keep watch while u light the wick until the colour of the flame match the light in ur irises you got an eye for this, I got eyes on you and cant turn away because I like the view so keep watch while I light the fuse until the colour of the flame match the light in my iris too I wanna ride with you I wanna do crimes with you I wanna headline the times with u (come on girl, we can spark this up) let’s let’s let’s let’s

go go go go

out out out out

and and and and

start start start start

fires fires fires fires

LADY SWORD SWALLOWER Nick Murray Illustrated by Hannah Bailey

She said she was a sword swallower. A dying art if I ever heard of one. At first I was in disbelief. When I came over I expected something more ordinary. Not too ordinary mind you, she was too alluring to be an accountant or a tax collector. To be honest, I didn’t know what I was expecting, but it wasn’t that. I gave her a sceptical smirk, a challenge that she accepted without so much as a breath. With thumb and forefinger she pulled the swizzle stick from her gin and tonic. Her throat rippled as she tilted her head back. Preparations? Nerves? Maybe she wasn’t a sword swallower at all. Maybe she was regretting the bluff now that I’d called her on it. Her neck was pale and flawless. Almost luminescent in the carefully planned gloom of the bar. With the tender languorous speed of a performer; slow enough to show that what she was about to do was in no way easy, but with enough speed to make sure I knew exactly how much confidence she placed in her skill, she touched end of stick to tip of tongue. From there it slid slowly back. Then down. For a few seconds she was a painted statue. Motionless, with her hand to her mouth, two fingers missing. I stared, another gaping fool at one of her shows. As she pulled it back out from the depths of her throat I caught a glimpse of the inside of her cheek. Perhaps that was all part of the act too, deftly considered to the very end. It was patterned with a frantic stripework of scars. The swizzle was placed on the bar, cutting the square of a napkin in two. She looked at me with an indecipherable half-smile. “So, what do you do?”

NATIONAL BLOOD SERVICE Will Coldwell Illustrated by Alex Simpson

Note: The views in this poem in no way reflect the views of the writer, who vocally promotes giving blood at every opportunity.

For forty years she has attended, From the day the home office thus recommended, Till her Blue Peter badge highly commended That the pints to her name were truly splendid. Gallons of the stuff; violet red flowing gush, Clench unclench fist no rush They’ll wait all day, can never get enough of it. Lick their lips, fill the bag with prime AB positive. Because she never realised that the vampires got organised. Made local retail a wholesale enterprise, Rise up from the dead to hear the living sigh, And tap provincial morality till the veins run dry. Hence; as Enid Brown from number 43, Does her bit for the community, A shadow spreads behind her hair netted head, As she lays herself upon a temporary bed. The nurse’s smile only just conceals, The glint of a fang, tinted red from its last meal, But as she ogles the neck peeking between grey wisps, Enid’s eyes are no-ones but a pack of Walkers crisps.

Strap you in, hook you up, Sweeten the pill with an “Ey up, love”. Tempting souls with a biscuit and a tea, These creatures of the night now feast for free. Enid was not vain, but she had great arteries, Which throbbed up with the arm pump most satisfactorily, And readily dispelled her plasma and cells, Along the tube and into the well. “Is it your first time?” rasped the nurse, “Why no”, answered Enid, not fearing the worst, And gave up her pint – no less and no more, With a sniff the nurse exclaimed, “O yes I’ve had this stuff before”. Because she never realised the vampires got organised. Made local retail a wholesale enterprise, And while she gave to the National Blood Service for years, Never once did she ask about their capes and pointed ears.

JUST PASSING BY Ben Mellor Illustrated by Tom Edwards

Now the morbid obese types and diabetes types and wheeze when they breathe types were just waddling by, and the dangling jowl types and cancerous bowel types and sweat so much they need a towel types were just heaving by, the ADHD kids enticed by the free gifts who badgered and whinged ‘til their parents conceded were just whining by, minimum wage rank and file underpaid for fake smiles, unionised for a while but got management riled and now spend their days watching Jeremy Kyle were just loafing by, indigenous tribes sold out by snide bribes whose trees were their lives now with nothing to do but imbibe and try to survive were just lurching by, south american farmers who’d rather rear llamas but became cattle ranchers just to keep wearing garments were just struggling by,

agricultural barons who grab land with talons apply pesticide by the gallon and reap crops of cash ‘til it’s barren were just swooping by immigrant abbatoir workers swapping poverty’s circus for conveyor belt murders whose sleepy mistakes leave literal shit in the burgers were just dozing by concentration camp cows, bald, beakless battery fowl injected, dissected but claimed they’re protected in ads played so loud you can’t hear their howls were just processed by And the fat chief execs who flex fiscal pecs and write themselves cheques while wondering which country, which city, which town, which village, which farm, which school, which body which mind will be next were just laughing by. There’s a WCDonald’s for everyone.





Anett Page E en e V RI nn B arni

I Deathear ted by A

H str Illu


Collision was a restraint that took hold during momentary lapses of judgment Sudden and disposable with shattered bits of glass Men in orange vests come with their brooms sweep with precision It is very important for flaws to be fixed when the means are available Patch those holes and push the dead guy out the back door Cover it up Suitable parcels divided into complimentary plots to be distributed for a sum Coexistence is a concept lacking political stamina Divide me by the shade of your umbrella Earmark my accounts with pork products and line your pockets Those cameras won’t hide the illicit things you buy Expose the yellow when you speed and lack the realization of remorse This tank will protect my shield and yours is of no concern His cup will remain empty while my wallet is full Excess I know the cold metal that separates this clash with piercing whistles in the night my distance from this track designates a social standing that will poison Opportunity is a friend that can strike with venom and leave you selfish Reflection is an ambiguous idea that can incorporate censorship The dependence on the pump is sucking this population dry as we continue to feed our addiction...


Hanna Bailey Illustrated by Milly Freeman

It came as quite a surprise when a creature with pebbly eyes, went galloping through on only two fine legs of extraordinary size.

I meant to call as the creature flew past, but I stood, agape and aghast. There was no time to think it was gone in a blink and I fear, of its kind, was the last.

HIROSHIMA, MY LOVE Ben Mellor Illustrated by Tom Edwards

He was like this alpha male particle Who randomly crashed into me at a party, all Promise and ambition, but that first collision Released amorous energy equivalent to nuclear fission. I felt chained to the reaction, Forever changed by our attraction And split, not into sub-atomic fractions, But simply into me before, and after, our interaction. In those early days he’d shower me With praise and flowers, be they radiant roses Like rays of sun the earth devours when days are done Or tulips, geraniums; cadmium red, yellow as uranium. I was enriched. 235 times over, His alchemy made heavy water days fizz like soda I glowed, ablaze, irradiated, penetrated like gamma, he Even made me begin to imagine creating a nuclear family.

He worshipped me like the goddess Demeter He said our love was too abundant to meter, Our love could cheat the fallout from an atomic bomb, Beat the apocalyptic hinterland of a nuclear winter. Man, he was wrong. For beneath a love too good to ever be through Grew a tumour of mutant words so meant to be true But emptied of energy when his fuel rod was spent, waste Mounted in underground pools too deep to be faced And when it leaked out we covered it up With a blanket of secrets, smothered it, fucked With forced groans that used to be felt, drowned The sound of alarms screaming of melt-down And as our half-lives decayed, contamination Became weapons grade stockpiles, proliferation Of fissile missiles made mutual destruction assured With just a hair-trigger deterrent like Damocles’ sword. Mushroom storm clouds brewing a rain of ruin Estranged lovers ducked for cover pressed button pursuing A white-hot solution for cold war allies turned enemies All that’s left is a shadow of love burned on our memories.


Josh Solnick Illustrated by Milly Freeman Note: Climbing the threads to God’s village is a description used by the Kalahari Kung San to describe the journey that healers undertake in ritual healing dances.

On the beach, on the shore The score the sea swell’s crash on the rocks Rain stick summoned On the beach, on the shore There’s a stone Gleaming split A portal into time

See the centre An inky orb A deep sapphire lake With dark matter shadows And a frozen spray of ancient stars. Look too close and fall in I did And

Sank To the edge of the lake Where I emerged

Naked Dancing wild rhythms on a cave wall My movements written in red-brown Blood dipped fingertip Heat animated Embers shape shift as I run Four-legged and fierce up the flickering flames And J U M P Flying Outstretched Climbing the threads to God’s village Bartering for life below I plead Screaming But they say “No” They cannot protect those who cannot see the stars.


BUT THIS IS MY LAND Tom Edwards Poem by Dorian Gray

I wade through mires unchartered my solid state liquified by the firestarter I fly, evade the fireflies buzzing debating why the sky’s huffing and puffing, blowing wind at puffins running reverse circles around nothing the globe slows to a halt snow flows by default those roads in the north are frozen, unthawed before the hordes are born and scores of thoughts forlorn by scorn, helplessly torn between forms of porn the thorn is inhaled pale faced I’m impaled speak to god through the smoke rings keep it hot, slowly imploding

I’ve ploughed the field and reaped my reward and now I feel like I could eat a horse Mr Fiddles is sleepy, I gave him a blowback in the middle of the teepee i pray for my home back the settlers are settling, unsettling our settlings telling new versions of everything, meddling peddling their wares, they blow a squall they wrote up a contract and stole it all but they can’t steal my love, my lifeline, my beauty she left two years ago of her very own duty (HAHAHAHAHA! YOU CAN’T TAKE THAT FROM ME!) she left me alone so I wept and I moaned and, everything, went, slow... I waded through mires unchartered until i met the firestarter his smile was infectious, but not in that way he just seemed not to care that the world was grey he sparked me up and watched me splutter my world embarked from grey to colour our days are bright, feel the red of propolis can’t wait ‘til the white people get a hold of this


Alice Pattullo Poem by Benjamin Bethell

“WE CAN HOPE” she says “yeah, we can hope I suppose” and between them they hope, pinpoint the problems, and dust the dresses off, and marinade the months in silence, and talk over one and other, “WE CAN WAIT” she says and they all nod, squash themselves in the words and breaths, wait patiently, and they glimpse it, sentences away, and they dream of it, and they hope, and they wait, and they know for certain it will never come.

THE HIGH CHAIR Elena Iezzi Poem by Will Coldwell

There was ne’er a condition worse than thronelessness, For the Queen, her Highness. Who lay quite flat otherwise, Her crooked posture she could not disguise. Without a prop. And although thrones tend to be ornamental, A chair never felt half as comfortable. And at the table, She was unable, To hide the cracks... Without that great wooden stack, On which to rest her back.

DON’T LOOK BACK Rosie Gainsborough Poem by Greg Sanders

n’ t



b ok


’t Don





find it! ss down there There’s progre

If you do well we’ll trickle you down some pocket money.

THE GIRL IN THE PICTURE Barnie Page Poem by Ben Mellor

She doesn’t yet know Picasso But this is her blue period; A Miles Davis kind of blue, A cool and sassy Savvy affectation of experience;

But I don’t take myself Too seriously, OK?’ Assembles her look From a collage of Past decades’ fashions

A blue that seeks to find a reason For her teenage indigo moods Beyond some vague Middle class malaise Inherited from her parents.

Redolent of an age Uncertain of itself; Sheltering in anachronistic Combinations of styles From more confident times.

Aeons away from needing Real glasses, she dons Ironic slings, Post-modern crutches As if to say ‘I’m cool,

But behind those lensless frames, Outwardly stating carefree chic, Two blue plaintive eyes Bespeak a growing realisation Of what is And hope for something better.

INFO/SHOUT OUTS If you would like to contribute to the next issue of inc. magazine, please do! We are always on the lookout for poets, graphic designers, spoken word ers and artists. Please email all comments, contributions or words of praise to: Also take the time to visit our blog at... ...where you can read poems and listen to our podcasts. Make sure you get down to Soul Rub’s flagship night, Word Is Born. It runs on a lunar cycle, on the first Sunday of each month at The Others in Stoke Newington. It features live music and spoken word and you can even sometimes get yourself a free copy of inc. magazine! For details of upcoming line ups search “Soul Rub” on Facebook and check out:

All work within inc. magazine is copyright ed under a Creative Commons licence. For the full licence visit: by-nc-nd/3.0/

Ch ch check out the illustrators work

at: Or contact the individual illustrators: Elena Iezzi Alice Pattullo Rosie Gainsborough Hanna Bailey Alex Simpson Tom Edwards Barnie Page Milly Freeman And here are the details of our poets: Ben Mellor Nick Murray Benjamin Bethell Dorian Gray Gloria Sanders Greg Sanders Josh Solnick Heather Ann-Bennett

STOCKISTS Bradbury’s Gallery 10c Bradbury St,N16 8JN Donlon Books 77 Broadway Market, E8 4PH Interzone Books @ Type 138 Bethnal Green Rd, E2 6DG Pages of Hackney 70 Lower Clapton Rd, E5 ORN Eastside Books 166 Brick Lane, E1 6RU

Railroad Cafe 120-122 Morning Lane, E8 6LH Artwords Bookshop 20-22 Broadway Market, E8 4QJ Brewode’s Cornucopia 60 Broadway Market, E8 4QJ Housmans Books 5 Caledonian Rd, N1 9DX Updated stockists can be found on the blog! If you want to be a stockist/ advertiser, contact Anya at:

Cover illustration by Elena Iezzi Printed the eco-op way by the lovely people at

inc. issue 3  

Bigger, better and in beautiful riso print, issue 3 takes inc. through a new concept that creates a dialogue between poets and illustrators...

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