Size / / /

The husbands win: by the end of the movie
shutterbug Katharine Ross, wisecracking Paula Prentiss
and tennis whiz Tina Louise all get replaced
by housewife robots, vacant-eyed
and acquiescent, their faces forever devoid
of laugh lines and double chins.

But what about ten years, twenty, into the future?
The Stepford husbands are getting older,
and so are their children.
The robot wives remain the same,
bodies eternally firm and lush
for the delectation of their aging husbands

(unless the husbands exchange them
for older-looking robots to avoid
suspicion, but that seems counter
to their need to soothe their loathing
for their own mortal flesh).

And what about their kids?
They can't help but notice, as they grow up,
that their moms aren't aging one bit
(and no sign of plastic surgery),
that they're obsessed with laundry detergent and floor wax
and possess none of the quirks they once had
(assuming the kids remember
what their moms were like, before).

Perhaps they broach the subject with Dad.
It's a somewhat awkward
conversation: "You see, kids,
I swapped out your mom
for a hot automaton who won't talk back.
(Technically, your mother's dead.)
All the other guys in town
were doing it. You understand."

Likely the fathers tell their sons
that they can do this too, someday,
once their human wives have given birth
to the requisite number of children.
Then they too can claim their vapid
reward, consolation for their own
inexorable bodily decay. But what
do the fathers have to say to their daughters?




Gwynne Garfinkle lives in Los Angeles. Her work has appeared in such publications as Uncanny, Lackington’s, The Cascadia Subduction Zone, and Not One of Us. Her collection of short fiction and poetry, People Change, is forthcoming in October from Aqueduct Press.
Current Issue
9 Dec 2019

“Full ahead, Mister Sal,” says Moore. I grit my teeth and force the Anastasis forward. The engines, the strongest of any ship I’ve ever steered, screech and whine like dying things. The nightgaunts are ten deep around us and it’s like flying through tar.
By: SL Harris
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
In this episode of the Strange Horizons podcast, editor Anaea Lay presents SL Harris's “Into the Eye.”
I stand in a cell for suffrage.
By: Jessy Randall
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
In this episode of the Strange Horizons podcast, editor Ciro Faienza presents Jessy Randall's “Mary Agnes Chase (1869-1963).”
Wednesday: Sharp and Sugar Tooth edited by Octavia Cade 
Friday: David Mogo, Godhunter by Suyi Davies Okungbowa 
Issue 2 Dec 2019
By: Sheldon Costa
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
By: Mari Ness
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Issue 25 Nov 2019
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Podcast read by: Nisa Malli
Issue 18 Nov 2019
By: Marika Bailey
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
By: Alicia Cole
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Issue 11 Nov 2019
By: Rivqa Rafael
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By: Mary McMyne
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Issue 28 Oct 2019
By: Kelly Stewart
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Podcast read by: Kelly Stewart
Monday: Aniara 
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Issue 21 Oct 2019
By: Omar William Sow
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
By: Amy H. Robinson
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Issue 14 Oct 2019
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By: Ruben Reyes Jr.
Podcast read by: Ruben Reyes Jr.
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Issue 7 Oct 2019
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By: Kali de los Santos
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Monday: 3% 
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Issue 23 Sep 2019
By: August Huerta
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
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