Size / / /

This is the time, the Soothspeaker said,
the webbing of her mind filled with tangles
of light, the clusters of her eyes pressed
shut. The time to question false wisdom,
a time to realize that the shackles binding
your souls do not exist for justice's sake.

The trembling thought-strands that stretched
from her head into the walls, the vaulted ceiling,
the universe, convulsed and recoiled. Her eye
clusters writhed, her chorus of mouths howled
in agony. The Thoughtseekers had found her,
from the dark corners of time they attacked.
Lightning leapt from her synapses and
the coils of her gossamer flesh began to burn.

We fled that place of awakening on legs, wings,
on superstring strands, terrified but aware.
Some tore holes in space and leapt through,
some scattered into quantum futures, some
flashed away in ships of light, some shifted
to energy and hid in the space between atoms.

Invisible, our rebellion still spreads, planted
in a billion mindmasses clustered around
as many worlds, those billions as vulnerable,
as gullible, as we once were. Do not accept,
we whisper down the soul-webs. Do not believe.


Copyright © 2002 Mike Allen

Reader Comments

Mike Allen's poetry has appeared in Weird Tales, Absolute Magnitude, Altair, Tales of the Unanticipated, Dreams of Decadence, and numerous other publications. He is the editor of Mythic Delirium, published by DNA Publications. Mike's collection, Defacing the Moon and Other Poems, is also available from DNA. He lives in Roanoke, VA with his wife Anita and a portly black cat named Prowler.

Mike Allen is president of the Science Fiction Poetry Association and editor of the speculative poetry journal Mythic Delirium. With Roger Dutcher, Mike is also editor of The Alchemy of Stars: Rhysling Award Winners Showcase, which for the first time collects the Rhysling Award-winning poems from 1978 to 2004 in one volume. His newest poetry collection, Disturbing Muses, is out from Prime Books, with a second collection, Strange Wisdoms of the Dead, soon to follow. Mike's poems can also be found in Nebula Awards Showcase 2005, both editions of The 2005 Rhysling Anthology, and the Strange Horizons archives.
Current Issue
20 May 2024

Andrew was convinced the writer had been trans. By this point his friends were tired of hearing about it, but he had no one else to tell besides the internet, and he was too smart for that. That would be asking for it.
You can see him / because you imagine reconciliation.
It’s your turn now. / the bombs have come in the same temper— / you in your granny’s frame
Issue 13 May 2024
Issue 6 May 2024
Issue 29 Apr 2024
Issue 15 Apr 2024
By: Ana Hurtado
Art by: delila
Issue 8 Apr 2024
Issue 1 Apr 2024
Issue 25 Mar 2024
By: Sammy Lê
Art by: Kim Hu
Issue 18 Mar 2024
Strange Horizons
Issue 11 Mar 2024
Issue 4 Mar 2024
Load More