Monday, August 31, 2009

Sunday, August 30, 2009

but not 4 sets!

Transmat glitch shuts down 'port during rush hour

2 for 1
such a great deal
they said after the incident
didn't u always want to be a twin?

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Friday, August 28, 2009

for New Orleans, 4 yrs on

blue-tarp roofs
shimmer in post-storm haze
welcome home

that smarts!

a critique
sometimes Pure Reason
is not the answer

flash in the stream

My new story at the Cabal. I fear it's a bit self-referential.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

if only engineers believed

small on
the outside
but when a sinkhole
opened beside the bridge half the
county fell in and troll ate well till the Guard showed up

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

year of the crustacean

jumbo shrimp patrol
brood burrows with shell shards
divers beware

DN 84 update

Going to the printer today

Work by--

Juan Mcgowan, Wade German, Arthur Gottlieb, Todd Hanks, assu, Denise Dumars, Kendall Evans, Geoffrey A. Landis, Marcie Lynn Tentchoff, Guy Beining, Ann K. Schwader, Randy Moore, Ruth Berman, Neal Wilgus, Duane Ackerson, John J. Dunphy, Bruce Boston, Marge Simon.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Time machines are so useful!

Cottage industry

Marsi made a good living
retrieving trash, such as
used concert tickets
and discarded newspapers
from before the

Her biggest customer was
the Bill Gates III Memorial Museum
of Physical Artifacts.

Sunday, August 23, 2009


sleep storm
cloud wrack streams
dragons eat the moon
outside the house flood tide falters

Saturday, August 22, 2009

wait till the bobber dips more

Fishing 4 Eloi

We fill thin bubbles with the pushing gas
Bubbles rise, carry rope of hair and
Sweet secretions of colony creatures
And shiny black glass
Sticky ropes sweep across plants rocks
Bubbles tug but ropes stick
We wait
Eloi come

Friday, August 21, 2009

take some tums!

Note to self: eat no more floating fish

lo freq rumble
the hi phi
structure spews itself
Swamp Thing, holding stomach,
hit by brick storm

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

for Gene

Gene Van Troyer

distant clear voice
silenced before we knew it
I mourn lost wisdom

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

fibonnaci-no ku

stagger me
lights swim in acrid
mirk but this door is found predawn
hammering and will you welcome your blank-eyed lover

Monday, August 17, 2009

Sunday, August 16, 2009

chapbook review

Just wrote a review of G. O. Clark's new chapbook, Strange Vegetables. No, I am not printing it here. It will eventually appear in Star*line. While I was copying the file I got to thinking about old chapbooks I've read. What follows is not the first review I wrote, but it is the oldest one still on my computer. This five-year-old chapbook is probably out of print, but there is something to be said for trying to find a copy (a quick search did not turn one up). I have not heard from the author in years, but I found a speculative poem of his published just two years ago on


Alec Kowalczyk, 2004, Shadow and Substance, Snark publishing, 637 West Hwy. 50 # 119, O’Fallon IL 62269, ISBN 0-9728948-8-8, $5, 32 pages, saddle-stitched.

review by David C. Kopaska-Merkel, editor of Dreams and Nightmares

When I first picked up this chapbook by Alec Kowalczyk I was struck by the unusual cover. Genre poetry collections usually have no cover art or drawings on the cover, but this one has a photograph. A very nice photograph, but one that looks like it belongs on the cover of a mainstream poetry collection. I had published a couple of Alec's poems and assumed this was a genre collection, but it really isn't. This is a mainstream collection. The book includes mostly very short poems: some are haiku and some belong to other forms. It doesn't take long to read one of these poems and you are on to the next one, unless you stop to think about it. This might be a good idea, because these poems have layers. And that is another advantage of a collection of very short poems. If each poem is good enough to make you ponder, then with more poems you get more bang for your buck.

I said this wasn't a genre chapbook. However, it does contain science-fiction poems, science poems, and fantasy poems, at least if you want to be a bit generous with your definitions, and that is always a good idea.

If I was a real reviewer I would now make some cute tie-in between the title, the title poem, and life, the universe, and everything. You're probably hoping for this, but it's not my thing. I would like to give you a taste of what this book contains. Here is one of the worlds from a poem called "three worlds":

while immediately below
the sun sparkles off a circling carp

And here is one that I think could be considered a genre poem:

"Roadside Gothic"

abandoned diner
rooted and overgrown
-- the click of a cup?

Whatever. Even if you don't agree with me about classification, which is admittedly subjective, I still think you should get this book, and read it, more than once. And, oh yes, I did recognize a couple of these poems. I was happy to see them again.


which is mightier?

Go on
draw your blaster
take your best shot
I don't think you can do it
you're not that good an artist

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Friday, August 14, 2009

so Greece should be safe, right?

A game of chess

Don't worry about residue
of structures;
even the most durable materials
will be long gone
before humans evolve
DNA? Don't make me
even mosquitoes trapped in
amber won't survive long enough
so, Prometheus,
leave all the cryptic messages
you want

hurry up and make your move
we need to be out of here
before the bolide hits the Yucat√°n
and barbecues North America

Thursday, August 13, 2009

journey to the centre

Come with me to the core.
Look! These bones have been here for centuries.
The Norwegians were the first
to make it all the way,
you might have read about it.
We'll need to traverse the outer core
by submersible – it's liquid.

a ku in 7x20

This story's a bit experimental

Does it work?

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Monday, August 10, 2009

Sunday, August 9, 2009

reading subs

Caught up to a week ago on esubs, with a few held 4 further review. A few snail subs on my desk.

January issue 1/2 full; Sept. 09 issue full.

the theory of island biogeography

island faunas
depauperate can't compete
Earth meets galaxy

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Friday, August 7, 2009

Thursday, August 6, 2009

a jug of wine and

dreamgirl reaches down
into his chest
strokes his trembling heart
returns to
memory's picnic

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

fixer upper

my style
and besides
I was looking for
a new home; at least one without
multicellular gunk smeared all over everywhere

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Monday, August 3, 2009

Sauron made me do it

the doctor begins its incision
paring with boundless concision
the tome's pared down to
a LOTR haiku
that's met with full-throttle derision

Sunday, August 2, 2009

reprint from 2001

An Open Letter To Our Astronauts

First published, 31 December 2001, reprinted 2003 chapbook _shoggoths_, Sam's Dot

I wonder about them, those brave explorers,
Cocooned in their antiseptic habitats,
Sexually and temperamentally paired to a nicety,
With all the amenities the late 21st C has to offer.
When they return, eyes blazing with alien worlds
(The cities, the domed necropoli, wheeled plants and
Mile-long insects, weird new minerals and
Precisely measured constants),
When they return from their far adventuring,
What will they think, poking through the pestilential ash
Of our last and truly final war,
In which even the bones of the slain were devoured
In jig time by the worst the late 21st had to deploy?
And I write them notes, preserved in a wide variety of media,
And hide them in obscure places on several continents.
I try to tell them: don't grieve, don't feel guilt,
Turn away from this stupid dead thing and go back to the stars,
So that our suicide will not quite have been in vain.


Saturday, August 1, 2009