Size / / /

Feel how the walls freeze and can't breathe.

Absurd as children flapping arms, the alien spaceboats

cycle through the airlock. Confront the things. Speak

of safety, of this fragile sheath,

practicalities of gravity, and, afloat,

feel how the walls freeze and can't breathe.

Reply to their red and golden physique

of sly heat, their flickering tendrilled bloat.

Cycle through the airlock. Confront the things. Speak

of trade, the consequences of failure. Seethe.

Try sign language, semaphore, a series of notes.

Feel how the walls freeze and can't breathe.

Your breath, unnecessarily loud in your helmet, halts

in your throat.

Feel how the walls freeze and can't breathe.

Cycle through the airlock. Confront the things. Speak.




Joanne Merriam is the publisher at Upper Rubber Boot Books. She is a new American living in Nashville, having immigrated from Nova Scotia. She most recently edited Broad Knowledge: 35 Women Up To No Good, and her own poetry has appeared in dozens of places including Asimov's, The Fiddlehead, Grain, and previously in Strange Horizons.
Current Issue
12 Apr 2021

The spaces within me both heal and house oracular properties.
By: Morgan L. Ventura
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Podcast read by: Morgan L. Ventura
In this episode of the Strange Horizons podcast, editor Ciro Faienza presents Morgan L. Ventura's “Dispatch from a Ruin in Mitla, the Town of Souls,” with a reading by the poet.
Do you know the tale of the armless maiden? In most tales, it is only her hands she loses.
Issue 5 Apr 2021
By: Caroline Dinh
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Issue 29 Mar 2021
By: Iman Alzaghari
By: Fargo Tbakhi
By: leena aboutaleb
By: Nada Almosa
By: Layla Azmi Goushey
By: Najah Hussein Musa
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Podcast read by: Iman Alzaghari
Podcast read by: Fargo Tbakhi
Podcast read by: leena aboutaleb
Podcast read by: Nada Almosa
Podcast read by: Najah Hussein Musa
Podcast read by: Layla Azmi Goushey
Issue 22 Mar 2021
Issue 15 Mar 2021
By: Isana Skeete
Podcast read by: Isana Skeete
Podcast read by: Kat Kourbeti
Issue 8 Mar 2021
By: Lorraine Wilson
Podcast read by: Kat Kourbeti
By: Gerri Leen
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Issue 1 Mar 2021
By: Sasha LaPointe
Podcast read by: Sasha LaPointe
Issue 22 Feb 2021
By: Hal Y. Zhang
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Issue 15 Feb 2021
By: Wen-yi Lee
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Issue 8 Feb 2021
By: Varsha Dinesh
Podcast read by: Courtney Floyd
By: Sarah Kathryn Moore
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Podcast read by: Sarah Kathryn Moore
Issue 1 Feb 2021
By: Tamara Jerée
Podcast read by: Kat Kourbeti
By: Betsy Aoki
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Podcast read by: Paul Starr
Load More
%d bloggers like this: