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“i planted the seed in my breast
and in its yearning to sprout
an unbearable pain took root
in my pain, i rejected everything, your love, and compassion even,

i devoured it all, not knowing, not wanting to see the bud
growing in my heart and when it had grown enough, blinded
by its red, that i thought boredom,
depression, anger, i cut it out meself,
and instead of trampling the rose like i expected, ya plucked it out
of the mud it had fallen into, and ya replaced it in my lap,

when i was in this wheelchair for the nth time of the year

“don’t look at me in the eyes,”
ya always told me, “it burns,”
ya once continued...

this time though, i did and i
saw the pain being reflected
back at me, as in a mirror,
none the wiser, i thought it only mine

it was only when i noticed the rose, just about to crumble,
on yer back, that i started to understand that ya were pained too”

“we both came a long way since then, didn’t we?
one of respect and understanding...”

“—curiosity too!”

“hey, do ya remember?

the first time we met, we were both having check-ups done,
me for my monthly routine of my fucked up body
ya for yer HRT blood tests and fucked tonus,
each thought the other the belle, not believing
the luck we had to cross paths as we did, well after”

“born or turned a monster,
it doesn’t matter
we’ll still have each other’s back
and love for one another
after all,

I’m Charybde and ya’re Scylla,”
“beast and belle all at once, we both are”
“beauty is the beast, right?”



Milouchkna weaves words, sometimes. She adores sweet stuff, pu-erh, and sequential art. She aspires to restore all things paper, and wants to start drawing. This peculiar disabled trans aro lesbiche bookworm disaster lives with her pets somewhere in France, near a valley of castles, and can be found on twitter @milouchkna and on tumblr at nephaba.tumblr.com/xiv.
Current Issue
19 Oct 2020

We wear the masks long after penguins have been extinguished. By now we are hauntresses, hordes of extinction shuffling along the city streets under the excruciating weathers of this brutal world we’ve inherited. Individually, we are called pinguinos. It’s something to do; the world is depressed and none of us have jobs.
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
In this episode of the Strange Horizons podcast, editor Anaea Lay presents Noah Bogdonoff's “Ask Not What the Penguin Horde Can Do For You.”
I may be eyeless but I can see through the eyes of everyone and everything. My parents put cameras all over the house
By: Aber O. Grand
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
In this episode of the Strange Horizons podcast, editor Ciro Faienza presents Aber O. Grand's “Marbles.”
Fiction submissions will close for November-December 2020. This means that the last window for general fiction submissions in 2020 will be October 26-27. Get your stories ready or hold them until January 2021. Fiction submissions for the Palestinian Special issue will open in November 2020!
Friday: A Tale of Truths by Berit Ellingsen 
Issue 12 Oct 2020
By: Elisabeth R. Moore
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
By: Stephanie Jean
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Issue 5 Oct 2020
By: J.L. Akagi
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
By: Lesley Wheeler
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Podcast read by: Lesley Wheeler
Issue 28 Sep 2020
By: Maggie Damken
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Issue 21 Sep 2020
By: Aqdas Aftab
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
By: David Clink
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Issue 14 Sep 2020
By: Fargo Tbakhi
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
By: Jenny Blackford
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Issue 7 Sep 2020
By: Catherynne M. Valente
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
By: Bethany Powell
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Podcast read by: Bethany Powell
Issue 31 Aug 2020
By: R.B. Lemberg
By: Julia Rios
By: Sonya Taaffe
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Podcast read by: R.B. Lemberg
Podcast read by: Julia Rios
Podcast read by: Sonya Taaffe
Issue 24 Aug 2020
By: Leslie J. Anderson
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Podcast read by: Leslie J. Anderson
Issue 17 Aug 2020
By: Emma Törzs
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
By: Liz Adair
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Issue 10 Aug 2020
By: Anya Johanna DeNiro
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
By: Laura Cranehill
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
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