A Network of Writing and Community Publishers

'Mythical Creatures'
July 2011

04 May 2012

The Slatted Barn

Who could say who would be next?
For three actresses had previously fled the scene
The directors cry of ‘it was only an owl’
Had fallen on closed and deafened ears.
Seeking solace in the slatted barn
They had vanished forever in its depth
Replicating the saga of the bloody murder
Where no trace of blood was ever found.
A story that was all consuming to the author
And a hook for an ambitious, but blase producer
After all actresses desperate for stardom were,
Ten - a - penny and expendable. Granted, it is a
Very strange place, so achingly cold and damp
But perfect and atmospheric for the big screen.
They all felt it; the bone chilling silence
Words, learned by rote, unspoken from painted lips
Her declaration of returning love left hanging
Halted by the sudden opaqueness of her lover’s eyes.
A guttural scream echoed in the stillness of the set
A scream, no owl’s throat could ever express.
Breaking out of character, she fled from the lights,
Into the swallowing darkness of the slatted barn.

Jan Hedger

Gorgon’s Head or Bad Hair Day

She lifted her head, a snake’s green scales
Made hideous her white skin,
Eyes wicked, crazed, blood-red.
From the depths of her being welled loathing;
From her mouth poured poison.
Her tongue lashed out foul rage, squalid despair,
With serpents’ heads and spitting tongues in her hair.
Her reptile’s tail slithered swift for the archer’s kill;
Scorched the earth; rattled a warning.
She hissed with satisfaction; lifted an arrow,
Never missed a target; pierced the heart.
Her baleful stare held no remorse; turned to cold stone
All that smelled of warm-blooded human.

Louise Glasscoe

Snow White's first encounter with the seven dwarves

After introducing herself, Snow White found herself telling the dwarves how she had come to be in their house. The dwarves all listened to Snow White's story, and by the time she had come to the end of it, any hostility they felt towards her had disappeared completely, they all felt sorry for Snow White, she couldn’t help looking the way that she did.

The first dwarf said ‘its ok it was just a bit of a shock to come home and find the front door open, and someone asleep in our house’ the largest of the small men said ‘lets start by introducing ourselves’

‘I’m Happy’ said the first dwarf, Snow White couldn’t help but smile, ‘hmm I wonder where you got that name from’ Happy seemed to have an almost incessant grin, and instantly started laughing.

Next was the dwarf that had broken the stunned silence, who had a bit of a red nose. ‘I’m Sneezy’. Snow White couldn’t help herself, she found this even more amusing. Next was Grumpy, who was the most miserable looking of all the jolly little characters, he was the only one that still seemed to have a bit of a scowl. Doc was next to introduce
himself, he wore a brown hat.

The next two dwarves introduced themselves as Sleepy, and Dopey. The last dwarf was Bashful, he was incredibly shy, Snow White couldn’t help but take to him in particular instantly.

After much discussion between the dwarves, they reached the unanimous decision to let Snow White stay for a while, they all agreed that it might be nice to have a woman around the house to look after them, clean for them and cook them nice meals for when they got back from a hard days work at the mine, especially a beautiful woman like Snow White.

Snow White was touched by this gesture of kindness from who to her until today were complete strangers

‘Please stay just for a few days’ begged Happy.

‘It would be so nice to have you, we never have visitors here, I don’t know if anybody even knows we exist to be honest, I don’t think anyone even believes in dwarves any more, let alone comes to our house’

‘Well I have to admit I was quite shocked’ remarked Snow White ‘I have seen pictures in books, but never thought I would see a real life dwarf, let alone Seven’

‘Well we dwarves like to stick together’ said Dopey

‘Well you really are most kind, ok if your sure its not too much to ask, I will stay just for a few days’ exclaimed Snow White

Elizabeth Jury

Do you believe in fairies

Do you believes in fairies
I do I do
They’re nice creatures not scarey
It’s true it’s true

Do you believe in dragons
I often see them fly
I see them soar above me
Up high in the sky

I see these mythical creatures at night in my dreams
They’re very gentle creatures; they don’t cause me to scream
When I wake up, the creatures have gone
But I know theyre still there; they’ll be back before long

For these creatures do exist theyre not just in my mind
They really are real for everyone to find
All you need is an imagination
Theyre whatever you want them to be, your own creation

Elizabeth Jury


The mythical creatures have gone away;
the mythical creatures had to pay
an entrance fee far too steep;
blinkered souls lulled them to sleep.

The mythical creatures are not rude;
they only come out to eat their food.
The're hungry,thirsty from long since when;
they get their digestion from chewing good men.

The mythical creature were no match
for the hordes of races ready to catch
dragons in pits from many a story;
somehow this reduced their glory.

The mythical creatures are back again;
the mythical creatures lift their pens
in the books of writers who like their style;
and from them seem to earn a pile.

Simon Walker
Goodmayes Writers

The Phoenix

The phoenix soars in flight
Wings of fire blaze a trail
To contradict the night
How can she fail?

We watch her bank and swoop
Exquisite in her pain
A stunning loop-the-loop
Why would she fail?

Ash falling lightly down
Upon my upturned face
True colours she has shown
Who must she fail?

Streaks of crimson and gold
Traced between stars and space
Heat lost amidst the cold
Where shall she fail?

Talons flexed, she's ready
Nothing can match her skill
Her flight path held steady
What shall she fail?

Her time is almost here
The feathers of her tail
As straight as any spear
When shall she fail?

Plummeting down to earth
Exploding into shame
The embers of re-birth
She'll try again

Ashley Jordan


Jake was becoming unsettled.  His master, Clem, tried talking to him.
“Damnit, Jake I know you can understand every word I say.” Clem paused, to reflect “Maybe that’s the problem – you can’t answer.”

Clem had discovered Jake alone in the woods, thirteen years ago. That scrawny, malnourished pup had grown into a strong and proud Alsatian. With his black and
grey colourings, some saw him as a wolf. Even Clem was concerned that cross-breeding had occurred.

Though tonight, Jake just sat quietly alongside Clem, taking in what was being said. One thing was sure, Clem knew he was safe in the house when Jake was with him. There had been a time when Clem was all alone. Jake was more than just a dog – he was everything to Clem.

The night was mild and misty. Clem took Jake for a walk. It was to be just around the
block, though Jake had other ideas. He led Clem into the woods. Clem followed willingly. “Something happened here, didn’t it, Jake?”

Jake gave a knowing look. They reached a clearing, and rested. Clem knew he would have to do something for Jake; but what? The wait was not long. A group of wolves surrounded them. Jake went up to the leader. They touched, and began communicating by sounds. What happened next, astounded Clem.


“The time is now, let us be as we should.” In the half-light it was difficult for Clem to see everywhere. When he shone his torch on those assembled, all the wolves had gone and in their place were eight men; all disabled. Some could not walk, others could not see.
One had lost his acute hearing and was now completely deaf. Jake explained to Clem “Yes, we are like you except we are not whole. I am lame, I will need your help.”

Clem rubbed his eyes in astonishment. “But how, when…why?”
Jake explained that the group had met before in their original form. Hating the way they
were, they were offered the opportunity to change. But their ‘helper’ only had limited powers. They would all be wolves. Jake was last to be changed. The power was weak then. So yes, he was half-wolf; but also half-human.

The leader of the pack spoke.
“What use is it to be strong and healthy, if you have to sacrifice so much to be that way. We decided to change back because society now is more tolerant of those less able. Together, we will be strong.”

Clem carried Jake’s frail body back to the house.  His neighbour asked
“Who’s that?”  Clem replied
“I just found him in the woods.”

Robert Brandon


Jonathan stretched out his arms and legs. He could almost touch both sides of the cell. From the splendour of the ballroom to the indignity of prison; and all because he tried to pull down Wayne Sleep’s trousers when on‘Strictly Come Dancing.’ He’d also tried to chat up Aled Jones, but soon realized he wasn’t like other boys. On the cell-wall there was a picture of Elvis. With one of his song-titles underneath.

It was tea-time. The electronically-operated doors buzzed open, and all the inmates filedout like a line of lost souls. And there was a danger of their souls being even more lost! Later that night, Jonathan sat alone in his cell. All the guards had left the area. They were surveying the block on closed-circuit TV. Plus, there was an intercom link to every cell.

At five past midnight, all the cell-doors opened. Jonathan awoke with a start, and scratched his eyes and his balls. Standing at the entrance was a strange-looking woman who was salivating heavily.

She read the song-title on the Elvis poster – ‘Are You Lonesome Tonight’.
“Not for long!” she thought to herself.
“Who the hell are you?”
“Don’t be so silly!”
Undeterred, the woman continued
“I’m looking for a sleeping man I can devour and suck their life-blood.”
“Um….and men sleep through that?”
“It won’t work any other way.”
All the other prisoners were now awake, and made their way to Jonathan’s cell. Some were wearing makeup, others wore nightdresses.

The woman turned.
"Aren’t there any real men in here – what sort of prison is this?” She was told
“A camp prison!”
“But I need a suck!” she exclaimed.  Someone suggested
“Why don’t you try the women’s prison down the road. There’s some butch types in there.”
“What kind of girl do you think I am!!” She gazed at the Elvis poster saying “I’m so hungry for love.” Jonathan said
“Actually, that wasn’t Elvis; Johnny Kidd and the Pirates sang that.” An effeminate voice cried out
“Thanks for visiting Heartbreak Hotel.”
“You’re all crazy in here,” she declared, before heading out into the night.

Jonathan met up with the other ‘residents’. One said
“How did she open the doors; why haven’t the guards come?”
“Maybe she’s got special powers.”  Jonathan said “Succubus.”
“Oh, go and suck your own bus – I’ve had enough.” Jonathan sighed.
“Oh dear, only another twenty-four hours in here. Now, whose trousers can I pull down?”
“Oh Jonathan!!”

Robert Brandon


Down in the basement
behind a closed door,
There’s a ghost of a woman
that daily we saw.

Grey as the shadow
that exist you will find,
Chased by the memory
that slowly unwind.

At night we would creep
avoiding the stairs,
Knowing the creature
would lurk unawares.

Just an old lady
with boots and a shawl,
Childhood draws pictures
Memory recall.

Newham Writers

Mythical Creatures

I am a turquoise dragon.  I am afraid to breathe.  I am afraid of deep water.  I want to swim in shallow water.  I eat eels. I wallow in the sand and I wiggle over cobbles. 

I spend time with other dragons on the hills.  I live in a cave near the sea.  Its roomy, big, dark and sheltered.  I have a couch that I love.  It is made of leather.  I also have a drinking bowl and a casket of eels in the cave.

Sue Horncastle


We at FWWVS are concerned at the discrimination faced daily by our membership. We may be few in numbers, but we are determined to get our voice heard. This government promised to protect minorities from harassment; and yet, we don’t see any change in people’s attitude towards us. I ask you, how many werewolves do you think will vote come the next election?

As Professor Günter Dribbleoff says:- ‘Lycanthropia is just another disease.  We should not be afraid of those who suffer from this condition. Instead, we should offer sympathy and support. The condition is now treatable with medication. We also have refuges
in some major cities where patients can go when there is a full moon. At all other times they are perfectly normal – just like me. Care in the community has not yet, unfortunately, extended to werewolves; though I believe it was created to help people like these. Lycanthropia seems to affect only the male population. This being so, it is difficult for women to fully understand the condition, or be sympathetic. It is only when a
family-member becomes affected that they ask for help. This is when the FWWVS can offer support and counselling to sufferers and relatives. Please help them continue their bad work, by giving yourself now.’

Yes, a great man, Professor Dribbleoff.

Here is an important announcement:- this Friday at 12noon – we would have preferred it to be midnight, but they are closed – there is a demonstration outside the National Bank in High Street.

We have reliable information that the bank is funding illegal firms who manufacture silver bullets. There is werewolf blood on their money. This must be stopped. Also, we need to end the vile practice of medical experiments on werewolves. Would you believe this is government-funded.

We have the same rights as anybody else. We are citizens, fathers, sons. Just because we metamorphosise occasionally, it should not be held against us.

We don’t want to hurt anyone – but we will.

Visit our website:- www.fwwvs-lycanthropy.com

Robert Brandon


Mythical creatures exist in the mind
Confuse and delight and help you unwind,
At night when the wind is blowing so high
These creatures exist, fly in the sky

Aliens and monsters that gobble up men
Leaving the fairies that live in the glen,
Nightmares and dreams bide side by side
These are the creatures we take in our stride.

Remember the tales of the bad bogeyman
The shadows that followed us when we ran,
Beware of the banshee that cried in the night
The witch with the brew that gave us a fright.

Nothing can change the horrors we feel
Myth of the monsters that childhood instil,
We hide from these creatures that nightly we dread
Hid by the sheets that cover the bed.

Newham Writers

Baku (Dream-Eater)

Baku lurks at the edge of your awaking
Where your dreams are fresh, and ripe for the taking
Gluttonous, he'll gleefully start his feasting
Leaving just enough, so you'll know that he's been eating

He'll pinch the words from the tip of your tongue
Take the end of sentences you've barely begun
As you get older, Baku gets even bolder
Stealing names and faces, times, events and places

He'll befuddle and confuse
This mortal foe of your muse
It becomes a battle of wits
When your memory's in bits

Diverting creative juices
As your intellect reduces
Your failed communication
A source of constant irritation

When your mind is always hazy
Baku grows fat and lazy
In a final act of charity
He'll let you see with perfect clarity

But, alas, it always comes too late...

Ashley Jordan

Dragons and Unicorns

A unicorn is a fabulous animal of them all
Pagans have a spell to make them appear in the spring fall.
You go to a quiet stream and say the words
Then meditate until something is heard.
You won’t see it in front of you in clear sight
It will be out the corner of your eye just to the right.
Not everyone even a Pagan can get this view
You have to work hard when knowing what to do.

What things do we know about this creature
One thing I know it has one feature.
The horn on its head holds pure magic there
When scraped off it gives a short sparkle, this makes your eyes stare.
When that has been done and you’ve got over that part
They start to brew the spells that they need to start.
People don’t imagine that magic is around
But those people who think that their minds are bound.

There is magic everywhere you go
It explains all those creatures of mystic we know.
The descriptions and ideas come from somewhere
Maps existed and with a cross on it meant dragons are there.
But how did that map come to be out and are shown
Someone has come back who has known.
They say you go near a dragon and you are dead
Mostly by fire but it could use its tail or just its head.
As gigantic as they are know
When the time they’re fully grown
You wouldn’t stand a chance if there is one around
It will fly to get to you then attack by air or ground.

I’ve told you of unicorns, which hold pure magic in their horn
Dragons which are deadly and maps have been shown so you can get warned.
These are only two of the many have been said
Some run and leave you alive but others will want you DEAD.

Jamie Fidgett

The Mystic

I knew a magician
Who could turn himself
Into an honest politician,
The only one that ever was.
More powerful than Merlin
With more wizardry than Oz.
He walked upon the water
And over burning coals.
He’d lie upon a bed of nails
And not make any holes.
He’d meditate from eight till late
And he could make his soul migrate,
A trick we’ve tried to emulate
To be in an enlightened state.
He could be invisible,
An animal, divisible
And cut himself in half,
Each part upon a different path.
Then he’d cause a disaster
To show he was the master,
Because he’d make things right again,
Fix the broken, ease the pain.
Was it really odd
That many men revered him
As if he was a god.

Andrew Diamond
Goodmayes Writers


Do you believe in fairies
with flowers in their hair
wings as soft as feathers
a song as light as air?

I believe in fairies
they live within my mind
in my imagination
as fantasies unwind

I dream among the bluebells
and wonder if and when
the fairies will appear today
in their fairy glen

A stream of silver stardust
dances before my eyes
my head is full of magic
of wonder and surprise

I smile in satisfaction
my work it is complete
a painting full of fairies
with happy dancing feet

Jan Hedger

The Ancient Oak

The old oak tree stood alone
Shivering, shaking, stripped to the bone
Leaves all gone with the autumn air
Winds had blown, left him bare.
Men had come in the early morn
Talk of old wood, new wood to be born
Came with their axe came with their saw
Strong rubber boots and bright jackets they wore.

All around him decimation occurred
The oak tree, stayed silent, not saying a word.
They came to him at the end of the day
Needed to fell him to earn their pay
They sweated and toiled but try as they might
The old tree was blessed, by an ancient rite.
As darkness fell they laid down their tools
Wise of the ways, the men were no fools
Stood back in respect and bowed to the tree
Put on their jackets, went home for their tea.

Jan Hedger

Horn of Plenty

The unicorn would have a horn
Protruding from his head;
Was like a horse, but now of course
The unicorn is dead.

A lovely, gentle creature
From the days of yore and magic,
When life was much more simple
And the world was much less tragic.

Becoming more material
We gave up the ethereal
And lost our spirituality
By bowing to reality.

Yet, one day, the Messiah will come
To grant us all our wishes.
The golden days will then return,
A phoenix from the ashes.

Andrew Diamond
Goodmayes Writers

The Elf, the Witch and the Fairy

An elf fashioned a ring
And gave it to a fairy.
She was very beautiful,
‘Twas her that he would marry.
But she thought he was ugly
So she called upon a witch
To put an evil spell on him,
The horrid little bitch.
They conjured up a dragon
Who breathed fire upon his head.
A gory little story,
For Alf the elf is dead!

Andrew Diamond
Goodmayes Writers


Another night Pegasus
flew by my window.
He didn't stop to say: Hi.
Standing in mid' air
fanning his wings
he said:
I do not like yours,
how do you call them?
They even do not rhyme.
Your English is far bellow
of language of Great poets,
and to be honest,
even your Czech stinks.
I am flying to have a tea
with a real poet
and she is only fifteen.
In what language?
I asked.
He didn't answer
and passed by
fluttering his wings
like helicopter's blades
heading toward a hospital's pad.
Medics are in the hurry
to save another patient's live.

Marie Neumann

The Last Dragon

In the tundra of flattery the wings unfold
A showy display in a barren, icy waste
No complimentary eye, her beauty to behold
Or opportunity to be anything but chaste

In the tundra of flattery the wings unfold
And all the possibilities are bravely faced
Clenching the fists that love and trust have failed to hold
And hoping for a chance to be anything but chaste

In the tundra of flattery the wings unfold
And a hopeful future is eagerly embraced
Hidden behind a secret smile both shy and bold
You know that, in her dreams, she is anything but chaste

Ashley Jordan


Your Name: jan hedger
Your Comment: Whoops! Forgot to add comment to 'The Slatted Barn' that this piece of work came directly from Derek's workshop at TheFED
2010 writing festival! Stepped out of my genre - thanks Derek

Your Name: jan hedger
Your Comment: Finishing with a flourish!

Your Name: jan hedger

Your Comment: I like being compared to a mythical creature! Ta Simon

Your Name: jan hedger

Your Comment: Like the Phoenix! Robert bless you, you do push the boundaries!Lol

Your Name: Ashley Jordan

Your Comment: Well done Robert :-) although I think a few women might understand a monthly urge to kill and maim a bit better than you imagine!


Your Comment: thank you all for giving me so much pleasure, each poem paints a picture, I am proud to be part, keep them coming - SALLY

Your Name: Andrew Diamond

Your Comment: Nice one Sally.

Your Name: jan hedger

Your Comment: Great beat and a conjured up picture Sally!

Your Name: Ashley Jordan

Your Comment: I think this is one of the best challenges we have ever had! I've loved reading all the submissions!  Well done Jamie it's great to see you writing again - Andrew it's always a pleasure to read your poems - the humour shines through :-) and Jan - I remember these two from our Tuesday group (I was going to ask you for them if you hadn't already sent them in lol) Marie - I loved your pegasus - what a clever twist at the end!
Your Name: jan hedger
Your Comment: Put two on Andrew - in true Blue Peter style - that I made earlier!
Love Alf the Elf - came in from late shift at work to it and roared with laughter!

Your Name: Andrew Diamond

Your Comment: Here we go again. We always rise to the occasion, so don't worry what you'll make of it Jan because, so far it's brilliant. Marie, my unicorn and your flying horse are going places!

Your Name: jan hedger

Your Comment: I'll have to see what I can do with this one - great start guys, nothing mythical about your words!

Your Name: Andrew Diamond

Your Comment: A lovely poem Ashley.

Your Name: Ashley Jordan

Your Comment: Dragons, Unicorns, Vampires, Fairies, Elves, Mermaids, Honest Politicians etc.
you all have lots of fun with this fantastic writing challenge! 


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