Size / / /


You can see them as they move among you
their opalescent aura shimmers like summer pavement heat,
mother-of-pearl, on the tips of their frizzed-out split ends.
They like to think they're normal.
The light behind their eyes is a look they share with the acid-
eaters, you know, an enlightened other-worldliness.
Their power comes from this world, though,
the dark side lighted only by the cycles of the moon . . .
Draw it down, draw it down.
The world of night is their kingdom --
they rule as the rulers sleep.
In woody nature the feather light edges soften
the twinkle of lights glimpsed in the trees.
They leap from one long shadow to the next,
Zig-zagging in catty-corners.
Everything in the negative, the feminine dark shadows


In the suburbs, you can hear the triumphant "Hah!"
as the pretty girl dances from her tiny tab. Night vision
comes from dropping back, pupils wide giving dark eyes
innocent overtones. Lovely Sacred Daughter of Diane.
She is sister to children of the moon, city lights too
close, ancient roots faded. Frantic finger-
honey finds solace in the night, each star a distant diamond
winkling clearly reflected in the dark space of her eyes.
The mad chant sweats beneath her delicate summer rain gown.
Using the game to create the essential essence,
she is led in where glowing bulbs force the male upon her.
Mist is left on the threshold; inside where the air won't move
her delicate power pounds beneath the want of others.
In her tiny sleep, the music of her distant siblings dying
doesn't waken her.


Copyright © 2002 Heather Shaw

Reader Comments

Heather Shaw has been a poetry editor, a performance poet at Lollapalooza, and was recently nominated for a Rhysling. When not immersed in verse, she writes fiction, non-fiction and makes up silly songs with her boyfriend, writer Tim Pratt. For more, see her Web site.

Bio to come.
Current Issue
22 Apr 2024

We’d been on holiday at the Shoon Sea only three days when the incident occurred. Dr. Gar had been staying there a few months for medical research and had urged me and my friend Shooshooey to visit.
Tu enfiles longuement la chemise des murs,/ tout comme d’autres le font avec la chemise de la mort.
The little monster was not born like a human child, yelling with cold and terror as he left his mother’s womb. He had come to life little by little, on the high, three-legged bench. When his eyes had opened, they met the eyes of the broad-shouldered sculptor, watching them tenderly.
Le petit monstre n’était pas né comme un enfant des hommes, criant de froid et de terreur au sortir du ventre maternel. Il avait pris vie peu à peu, sur la haute selle à trois pieds, et quand ses yeux s’étaient ouverts, ils avaient rencontré ceux du sculpteur aux larges épaules, qui le regardaient tendrement.
We're delighted to welcome Nat Paterson to the blog, to tell us more about his translation of Léopold Chauveau's story 'The Little Monster'/ 'Le Petit Monstre', which appears in our April 2024 issue.
For a long time now you’ve put on the shirt of the walls,/just as others might put on a shroud.
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
Issue 26 Feb 2024
Issue 19 Feb 2024
Issue 12 Feb 2024
Load More
%d bloggers like this: