Size / / /

the door is locked.

one of us outside, one inside,

me peeling stars from my shoulders

like chitons from rocks,

shining and wet with the chill of the Pacific,

you, volcano or limpet,

clinging to my mind's eye

like you were born there,

starlight streaming through your keyhole,

hermit with a come-hither suicide note,

written in a dead language.

burning with fury of subduction scorned.

Thoth took a page from your book,

searing language into brains

ill-equipped to use it.

we fumble with the matches anyway,

dementia boiling in the abyss if we slip,

so I'm out here now,

rubbing my shoulders raw,

staring into those million million suns,

and counting coup on my fingers,

making five out of two and two.

the god's book glows blackly now and

the door is locked.




An aether compactor by trade, David Kopaska-Merkel began writing poetry after witnessing the Ascension of Tim. He won the Rhysling award for best long poem in 2006 for a collaboration with Kendall Evans. He has written 23 books, of which the latest is SETI Hits Paydirt  (Popcorn Press). Kopaska-Merkel has edited Dreams & Nightmares magazine since 1986.  You can reach him via email.
Current Issue
24 Feb 2020

tight braids coiled into isles and continents against our scalps
By: Mayra Paris
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
In this episode of the Strange Horizons podcast, editor Ciro Faienza presents Mayra Paris's “New York, 2009.”
This Mind and Body Cyborg as a queer figure raises its head in Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone’s 2019 epistolary novel This Is How You Lose the Time War, as two Cyborg bodies shed their previous subjectivities in order to find a queer understanding of one another.
Carl just said ‘if the skull wants to break out, it will have to come to me for the key’, which makes me think that Carl doesn’t really understand how breaking out of a place works.
Wednesday: The Heart of the Circle by Keren Landsman 
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Issue 17 Feb 2020
By: Priya Sridhar
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
By: E. F. Schraeder
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Issue 10 Feb 2020
By: Shannon Sanders
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Issue 3 Feb 2020
By: Ada Hoffmann
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By: S.R. Tombran
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Issue 27 Jan 2020
By: Weston Richey
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Issue 20 Jan 2020
By: Justin C. Key
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By: Jessica P. Wick
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Issue 13 Jan 2020
By: Julianna Baggott
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By: Terese Mason Pierre
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Podcast read by: Terese Mason Pierre
Issue 6 Jan 2020
By: Mitchell Shanklin
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
By: Nikoline Kaiser
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Issue 23 Dec 2019
By: Maya Chhabra
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Issue 16 Dec 2019
By: Osahon Ize-Iyamu
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
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Issue 9 Dec 2019
By: SL Harris
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By: Jessy Randall
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