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“Firebird, Stormbird” © 2023 by Dante Luiz


The storm that doused the firebird
acquired an essence of birdness
Over and over the virulent water
beat my flame down to ash
denying my rebirth, my voice, but watch now
for this one weird trick:
watch me rise
in the essence of indigo.

I am the inheritor of thaw
of meltwater frozen for millennia
jolted into this world’s violent heat;
Hear me, I am stormbird
made featherdrop by featherdrop
from the reawakened wave—
I am old and I’m angry
and wise and I wail
rage and electrical currents
across your every horizon


[Editor’s Note: Publication of this poem was made possible by a gift from Katherine Prevost during our annual Kickstarter.]

R.B. Lemberg (they/them) is a queer, bigender immigrant originally from L’viv, Ukraine. R.B.’s work set in their fantastical Birdverse has been a finalist for the Nebula, Ignyte, World Fantasy, Locus, Crawford, and other awards. R.B.’s Birdverse collection Geometries of Belonging is currently shortlisted for the Ursula K. Le Guin Prize for Fiction. You can find R.B. on Instagram and Bluesky, on Patreon, and at
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