Size / / /

Content warning:

i also want to challenge police forces
to keep me contained: jails handcuffs
chains ropes straitjackets. magicians knew
spectacle was struggle reframed: the chance
of a man drowned in a milk can, like a kitten,
spilled past the footlights. the papers called him
self-assured, imperious: short sharp bowlegged man,
Rabbi’s son, thrice renamed, a boy trapeze flyer,
cross-country runner, with lockpicks hid in his hand.

Harry says: when faced with straitjackets,
get bigger. expand to the size of the gap
between mamaloshen and Wisconsin; use
your struggle as disguise. remember: i am
stronger than madness. (create the slack.)
i am stronger than death, buried alive.
named and renamed i am stronger than lies.
never let them know your true size.
i am stronger. they never took Ehrich alive.

[Editor’s Note: Publication of this poem was made possible by a gift from Maya Chhabra during our annual Kickstarter.]

Leah Bobet’s latest novel, An Inheritance of Ashes, won the Sunburst, Copper Cylinder, and Prix Aurora Awards and was an OLA Best Bets book; her short fiction is anthologized worldwide. She lives in Toronto, where she builds civic engagement spaces and makes quantities of jam. Visit her 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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