Size / / /

Ladders (Product Warning)

It is not advised

that you attempt

an additional step

after reaching the top

of this stepladder.

People have been known to do so

and stumbled,

landing on the moon.

Others have been attacked

by particularly territorial

and predatory flocks of clouds.

Still others have taken this ill-advised step

and found themselves mysteriously

enlisted in a V formation of Canadian geese;

and, almost before they knew it,

were stranded in the Caribbean

without a passport

or even a Cayman Islands bank account

and suffering from extremely sore arms.


Spitwad Hall of Fame

Here's the one that hit the teacher

when his back was turned at the blackboard.

Here's the one that changed

a potential girlfriend's mind

about going out with you.

Here's the one with Elvis's profile.

Here's the largest one in existence.

Here's the smallest.

Here's the exit

for those who came in

by mistake.


The Ghostly Barber Shop

Since hair is rumored to grow after death,

there is also said to be

a certain barber shop

where, after midnight,

the dead congregate for a trim.

The barber, cold fingers still

fastened to his clippers,

emerges from sleep in the mirror

and takes them in order

each number came up.

Hair dissolves like fog

as it touches the linoleum floor.

Before daylight, these return to their graves,

bringing the good news of a new image

to their particular bodies.

In the dark, they embrace

who they used to be.




Duane Ackerson's poetry has appeared in Rolling Stone, Yankee, Prairie Schooner, The Magazine of Speculative Poetry, Cloudbank, alba, Starline, Dreams & Nightmares, and several hundred other places. He has won two Rhysling awards and a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. He lives in Salem, Oregon. You can find more of his work in our archives.
Current Issue
24 Feb 2020

tight braids coiled into isles and continents against our scalps
Podcast: New York, 2009 
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 
Friday: Into Bones Like Oil by Kaaron Warren 
Issue 17 Feb 2020
By: Priya Sridhar
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
By: E. F. Schraeder
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Issue 10 Feb 2020
By: Shannon Sanders
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
Issue 3 Feb 2020
By: Ada Hoffmann
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
By: S.R. Tombran
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Issue 27 Jan 2020
By: Weston Richey
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Issue 20 Jan 2020
By: Justin C. Key
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
By: Jessica P. Wick
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Issue 13 Jan 2020
By: Julianna Baggott
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
By: Terese Mason Pierre
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Podcast read by: Terese Mason Pierre
Issue 6 Jan 2020
By: Mitchell Shanklin
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
By: Nikoline Kaiser
Podcast read by: Nikoline Kaiser
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Issue 23 Dec 2019
By: Maya Chhabra
Podcast read by: Maya Chhabra
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Issue 16 Dec 2019
By: Osahon Ize-Iyamu
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
By: Liu Chengyu
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Issue 9 Dec 2019
By: SL Harris
Podcast read by: Anaea Lay
By: Jessy Randall
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Load More
%d bloggers like this: