Size / / /

"Every time you take a drink of water, you're drinking recycled star material. Our bodies are created entirely of star stuff."

—National Geographic

When he learned he could drink the stars, he vowed

that even one burning sphere could never be enough

to quench the thirst that ached in all his shriveled cells;

he longed to pour galaxies down his throat, consume

cold dwarfs and exploding novas, suck cotton candy

nebulae through his teeth, chew the baby stars

inside like sunflower seeds, wolf dark matter gulfs

in gassy gulps and mow through Andromeda spirals

like a starved teen through meatlover's pizza. He longed

to turn himself inside out. Envelop and swallow

the universe. Stuff his stomach on bloated creation.

Spill acid back to the Big Bang. Show God

how real cleansing gets done, primordial soup

breakdown way more wicked than Noah's flood.

Mike Allen is president of the Science Fiction Poetry Association and editor of the speculative poetry journal Mythic Delirium. With Roger Dutcher, Mike is also editor of The Alchemy of Stars: Rhysling Award Winners Showcase, which for the first time collects the Rhysling Award-winning poems from 1978 to 2004 in one volume. His newest poetry collection, Disturbing Muses, is out from Prime Books, with a second collection, Strange Wisdoms of the Dead, soon to follow. Mike's poems can also be found in Nebula Awards Showcase 2005, both editions of The 2005 Rhysling Anthology, and the Strange Horizons archives.
Current Issue
25 Sep 2023

People who live in glass houses are surrounded by dirt birds
After a century, the first colony / of bluebirds flew out of my mouth.
Over and over the virulent water / beat my flame down to ash
In this episode of  Critical Friends , the Strange Horizons SFF criticism podcast, Aisha and Dan talk to critic and poet Catherine Rockwood about how reviewing and criticism feed into creative practice. Also, pirates.
Writing authentic stories may require you to make the same sacrifice. This is not a question of whether or not you are ready to write indigenous literature, but whether you are willing to do so. Whatever your decision, continue to be kind to indigenous writers. Do not ask us why we are not famous or complain about why we are not getting support for our work. There can only be one answer to that: people are too busy to care. At least you care, and that should be enough to keep my culture alive.
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