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Seven years I beg men in white
to make a clock of my insides,
to build for me a patient body,
a human one
with moonflowers for eyes.
The doctors say
rage is not a flower.
They tell me to eat
soft and bland for healing.

So I suckle honeysuckle sap
for pleasure and steam sunset
marigolds for distraction
as the sleepless itch for power
swells beyond my belly button.

I sob when my skin first begins
to sting and brittle. My fine baby hairs
sharpen to needle horns while I call
sing and plead, staring
through dull hospital glass
at the bloody hyacinths
bursting across the street. Please,
I would rather bear fruit
than fire.
But my salt calls no army.
I am an echo in a cave.

Flaming intestine sprouts
from my belly, flares to fierce wing.
My screams carry organ pipes
to the desert and birth fields of wild red
milkweed in the open mouths of dunes.
Rage leathers my guts to mottled scale.
I burn everything I touch
and myself, to shriveling pitless cherry.
Reborn in brimstone, my golden
glinting lizard hide straddles the canal
and I hunger for bloom. Cloaked
in silken gowns, heavy beneath
heady magics, the men chant
as a chorus back to me:
no, no, no.



Liz is a gutless wonder—a poet without a large intestine, trying to write gut-punching poems. She received her B.A. in English from the University of Alabama in 2016. Currently, she serves as the Managing Editor of The McNeese Review, and organizes MSU’s graduate reading series. She is the first place recipient of the 2019 Joy Scantlebury Poetry Prize, and her poems have been selected as finalists for Jabberwock Review’s 2019 Nancy D. Hargrove Editors’ Prize in Poetry and F(r)iction’s Winter 2018 Poetry Contest, judged by Kwame Dawes. She lives in Lake Charles, Louisiana, with her (very cute) dog, Rocky.
Current Issue
18 Jan 2021

Soft Shoulder speaking softly / quick-stop-tongued lanky cur dog / lisping languid in jeans
By: Zach Ozma
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Podcast read by: Zach Ozma
In this episode of the Strange Horizons podcast, editor Ciro Faienza presents Zach Ozma's “Soft Shoulder (Excerpt)” with a reading by the poet.
Splinters, old and new. How else can the skin remember the tree? If it hurts, that is the point.
The way I see it, this story is full of symbolic touchstones, visual elements with layers of meaning that are not always obvious, or even accessible, to the reader.
Wednesday: Bulbbul 
Friday: The Hierarchies by Ros Anderson 
Issue 11 Jan 2021
By: Ryu Ando
Podcast read by: Kat Kourbeti
By: Nikki Caffier Smith
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Issue 4 Jan 2021
By: Maya Beck
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
By: Stephanie Burt
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Podcast read by: Stephanie Burt
Issue 21 Dec 2020
By: Octavia Cade
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
By: Meep Matsushima
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Podcast read by: Meep Matsushima
Issue 14 Dec 2020
By: ML Kejera
Podcast read by: Kat Kourbeti
By: Brigid Nemeton
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Podcast read by: Brigid Nemeton
7 Dec 2020
Strange Horizons is now accepting fiction submissions for the Palestinian Special issue! The issue, edited by Rasha Abdulhadi and Basma Ghalayini will be published at the end of March 2021. We are open for submissions from now until January 31, 2021. Don't wait till the end to send your work!
7 Dec 2020
تقديم الطلبات مفتوح من الان و حتى تاريخ 31 يناير 2021. قدم/ قدمي عملك عاجلا و ليس آجلا!
Issue 7 Dec 2020
By: Toby MacNutt
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
By: Anna Cates
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Issue 1 Dec 2020
By: Ateri Miyawatl
Translated by: Ateri Miyawatl
By: Ateri Miyawatl
Translated by: Adam Coon
By: Vraiux Dorós
Translated by: Toshiya Kamei
By: Luz Rosales
Translated by: Andrea Chapela
By: Libia Brenda
Translated by: Allana C. Noyes
By: Ateri Miyawatl
Podcast read by: Ateri Miyawatl
Podcast: Bromelia (English) 
Podcast: Bromelia (Español) 
Issue 23 Nov 2020
By: Michael Bazzett
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Podcast read by: Michael Bazzett
Issue 16 Nov 2020
By: Cat Aquino
Podcast read by: Kat Kourbeti
By: Michael Chang
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
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