Size / / /

These are the facts of your life:
You were born on the carousel.
It was a cold fall night, just like this one,
And the park was dead-deserted.
Our lights were all turned off.
Your mother is the swan-bench.
We don't know who your father was.
You needn't look so ashamed --
Not on that count.
It would have been the same for any of us.
So many men ride us. It can't be helped.
The groundskeeper found you
And raised you in his hothouse.
He should have known better
Than to let you out this time of year.
Oh, you escaped, did you?
I expect you don't know better.
You say he named you Helen?
His mythology is not quite sound.
But no matter. It fits you.
Come sit under the awning. It keeps the wind off.
Something brought you back here.
But you couldn't have remembered, could you?
And this isn't a happy place,
Not even when there's music and voices,
All the looping sounds of life.
But I suppose all of us must have somewhere,
And this place is as good as any --
For one such as yourself.
When all the crowds are gone,
And the wind dies down for just a moment,
It's almost like a place that could be home.

 

Copyright © 2004 Jennifer de Guzman

Reader Comments


Jennifer de Guzman is a literature student, comic book editor, and privateer from the San Francisco Bay Area. When she isn't sailing the high seas for glory and profit, she is usually reading, writing, or moping about on the floor. Her fiction has also been published in Strange Horizons.



Current Issue
14 Oct 2019

Two in the morning in the booth of an all-night diner a block off Santa Monica Boulevard, and I was trying to convince the Great Mandini to tell me his secrets.
By: Kevin Wabaunsee
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
In this episode of the Strange Horizons podcast, editor Anaea Lay presents Kevin Wabaunsee's “The Great Mandini and the Dead Man's Hand.”
atol de elote, pho, boba, pupusas / Taco Tuesday tacos, one dollar Spam musubi
By: Ruben Reyes Jr.
Podcast read by: Ruben Reyes Jr.
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
In this episode of the Strange Horizons podcast, editor Ciro Faienza presents Ruben Reyes Jr.'s “Heaven Is Expensive,” as read by the poet.
Wednesday: Stronger, Faster, and More Beautiful by Arwen Elys Dayton 
Friday: The History of Soul 2065 by Barbara Krasnoff 
Issue 7 Oct 2019
By: Charles Payseur
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
By: Davian Aw
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Issue 30 Sep 2019
Podcast: High Hopes 
By: Kali de los Santos
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
Podcast: Progression 
By: Heitor Zen
Podcast read by: Julia Quandt
Podcast: Spider 
By: Sérgio Motta
Podcast read by: Sérgio Motta
Podcast: Replacement 
By: Isa Prospero
Podcast read by: Solaine Chioro
Monday: 3% 
,
Issue 23 Sep 2019
By: August Huerta
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Issue 16 Sep 2019
By: Marie Brennan
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
By: Hester J. Rook
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Podcast read by: Hester J. Rook
Issue 9 Sep 2019
By: Shiv Ramdas
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
By: Sarah Shirley
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
31 Aug 2019
Brazil Special Issue call for fiction submissions!
Issue 26 Aug 2019
By: Cynthia So
Podcast read by: Cynthia So
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Issue 19 Aug 2019
By: S. R. Mandel
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
Issue 12 Aug 2019
By: Niyah Morris
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
By: Dante Luiz
Art by: Em Allen
By: Ciro Faienza
Podcast read by: Rasha Abdulhadi
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Issue 5 Aug 2019
By: Aisha Phoenix
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
By: Alexandra Seidel
Podcast read by: Alexandra Seidel
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Load More
%d bloggers like this: