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for Stanley Fefferman

You like that every single word, image, and idea in my poetry has meaning and is put there for a reason, so when you ask about the plant in my poem and need to know more about it, its background, where it came from, whether it was a gift, I tell you that many years ago it was a seed in a meteorite that had travelled to Earth from another planet, an exo-planet that we now know as Dimidium, 50 light years away in the constellation of Pegasus, and it germinated, came into full bloom, and was lovingly cared for by a man who was regularly abducted by aliens, and during one of these abductions the plant was kidnapped by Somali pirates and then was knocked overboard in a howling storm. It washed ashore and was rescued by a Jesuit missionary and his wife. Years later the Jesuit died of toxic fumes while painting his semi-detached bungalow, and the wife, whose name was Constance, a Civil Engineer who could speak three languages, not wishing to be reminded of him, by which the plant, through no fault of its own, did, left it at the front door of a local home and garden centre, which, unbeknownst to her, was run by cruel botanists (who happened to be shape-shifting identical twins) who were ready to call it quits, because their business was ready to go into receivership due to incompetent management practices, the fickle markets, and a monsoon in the Philippines. When my girlfriend saw the shape that the plant was in, her heart went out to it, figuratively, and she bought it and brought it back to health by playing Antonio Lotti’s Crucifixus for 8 voices, performed by The Toronto Mendelssohn Choir, which was co-founded in 1894 to celebrate the opening of Massey Hall, and when we moved in together she gave the plant to me, a gift, a token of lasting friendship, a reminder that love endures, that love heals, that love can span solar systems, and love can bring two people together, despite everything. And how fortunate for me that I painted these walls blue two decades ago, capturing so delicately the mood I am in now. And what of the shape-shifting botanists, what made them so cruel? You may want to sit down for this.



David Clink’s poem, “A sea monster tells his story” won the 2013 Aurora Award for Best Poem/Song. David’s latest collection is: The Role of Lightning in Evolution (CZP, 2016).

Current Issue
26 Sep 2022

Would a Teixcalaanli aristocrat look up at the sky, think of Lsel Station, and wonder—with Auden—"what doubtful act allows/ Our freedom in this English house/ our picnics in the sun"?
I propose that The Expanse and its ilk present us with a similar sentiment, in reverse—a warning that for all the promise of futurism and technological advancement, plenty of new, and perhaps much worse futures are right before us. In the course of outrunning la vieux monde, we may find that we are awaited not simply by new worlds to win, but also many more which may yet be lost.
where oil slurped up out of the dirt, they drink the coffee
Science fiction is a genre that continues to struggle with its own colonialist history, of which many of its portrayals of extractivism are a part. Science fiction is also a genre that has a history of being socially progressive and conscious – these are both truths.
Bring my stones, my bones, back to me
If we are to accept that the extractive unconscious is latent, is everywhere, part of everything, but unseen and unspoken, and killing us in our waking lives, then science fiction constitutes its dreams.
they are quoting Darwish at the picket & i am finally breathing again
Waste is profoundly shaping and changing our society and our way of living. Our daily mundane world always treats waste as a hidden structure, together with its whole ecosystem, and places it beyond our sight, to maintain the glories of contemporary life. But unfortunately, some are advantaged by this, while others suffer.
Like this woman, I am carrying the world on my back.
So we’re talking about a violence that supplants the histories of people and things, scrubbing them clean so that they can fuel the oppressive and unequal status quo it sustains.
Issue 21 Sep 2022
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By: Cat T.
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