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with you, guided by quantum pilotage,
holding hands, hearts pounding.

Long we’ve been gone,
but we're nowhere
near done.

In Amherst,
we heard Her
say something like:

wild nights,

close calls when
I’m with Thee
dressed to the nines,

at the parade
until the Archduke
is shot and then

speeding away
before it all
goes up in flames.

After a nap, we
wake to fire and

after making love after
making war:
Persepolis burning

snap-decision of our leader,
wasted, like us, and looking
to impress Hephaestion.

One last stop today
homeward bound,
in space and time. We land

after nightfall, tip-toeing,
down Ford’s corridors,
guns drawn, silencers on,

padding, oh so softly, toward
the greenroom of
John Wilkes Booth.

In Amherst, She
postulated that,
perhaps, just

once, we can
defy our Holy
Guide’s One

and Golden Rule:
you can see anything,
but on the condition

that you never

Paul is a historian of global environmental change and the American Empire. He also writes fiction and poetry with climate justice and history themes. When he’s not in the archive or the classroom, he’s jogging, cooking, gardening, hiking, or hanging out with his husband and their dogs. You can check out more of his work at
Current Issue
25 Sep 2023

People who live in glass houses are surrounded by dirt birds
After a century, the first colony / of bluebirds flew out of my mouth.
Over and over the virulent water / beat my flame down to ash
In this episode of  Critical Friends , the Strange Horizons SFF criticism podcast, Aisha and Dan talk to critic and poet Catherine Rockwood about how reviewing and criticism feed into creative practice. Also, pirates.
Writing authentic stories may require you to make the same sacrifice. This is not a question of whether or not you are ready to write indigenous literature, but whether you are willing to do so. Whatever your decision, continue to be kind to indigenous writers. Do not ask us why we are not famous or complain about why we are not getting support for our work. There can only be one answer to that: people are too busy to care. At least you care, and that should be enough to keep my culture alive.
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