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The thelawallah’s cart resembles a war field:

his carrots blaze like Red Fort
but his radishes come
with a cool shade of leaves.

I swallow my spit—suppressing
the desire to eat the street.

"Whoosh! Whoosh!"

a little shehzada pulls ahead of me
fighting djinns and rakshasas
clearing the road to Fatehpuri.

On both sides:
an infection of crumbling sights
plague old refurbished buildings

—a dirty tricolored flag sprouts
from the rot like a peepal tree.

On a shaky rooftop

a young photographer adjusts his tripod
while his friend points her lens
to the old city from the edge of her seat:

Shahjahan’s drunk elephants
are marching the open road
to be partitioned into two countries.

I burn my field notes with my father’s remaining skin:

his relatives are always eating
off leaf plates washed with haoma
and stitched with funeral pins.

The ghat is across the border.
(The border is always sealed.)



Salik Shah is a writer, filmmaker, and the founding editor of Mithila Review, the journal of international science fiction and fantasy (2015-). His work has appeared on Asimov’s Science Fiction, Strange Horizons, Tor.com, and The Gollancz Book of South Asian Science Fiction (Volume 2). Twitter: @salik. Website: salikshah.com.
Current Issue
27 Jun 2022

A crack in my leg opened my world, shattered it like thunder announces the arrival of lightning
it's only natural that // If I'm going, I want to be gone with you.
Kalpavigyan, or Bengali SFF: An Interview with Dip Ghosh 
[In this interview, Strange Horizons co-ordinating editor Gautam Bhatia speaks to Dip Ghosh, the editor of Kalpabiswa, the first online magazine of Bengali SFF. This interview was conducted through a collaborative Google Document, in June 2022.] Gautam Bhatia: Hi Dip, and thanks so much for agreeing to do this interview with Strange Horizons. I want to start by asking you something basic: the name of the Bengali SF magazine you edit is Kalpabiswa. Bengali SF itself is known as kalpavigyan. Can you take us through the etymology of these terms, and how we should understand them in translation?  Dip Ghosh:
There are plenty of reasons to love epistolary storytelling. Personally, I love the way various epistolary formats can shape a story in interesting and innovative ways, and I also love how the choice of format can hone the voice of a story.
Friday: How to Get to Apocalypse and Other Disasters by Erica L. Satifka 
Issue 20 Jun 2022
Issue 13 Jun 2022
Issue 9 Jun 2022
Drowning in This Sunken City 
Thursday: Everything Everywhere All At Once 
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Issue 6 Jun 2022
Podcast: 6 June Poetry 
Issue 30 May 2022
Issue 23 May 2022
Issue 16 May 2022
Issue 9 May 2022
Podcast: 9 May Poetry 
Issue 2 May 2022
By: Eric Wang
By: Sara S. Messenger
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Podcast read by: Sara S. Messenger
Issue 18 Apr 2022
By: Blaize Kelly Strothers
By: Ken Haponek
Podcast read by: Blaize Kelly Strothers
Podcast read by: Ken Haponek
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
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