alpaca apparitions

woolen wings

in the age of hollow copies.

On nights when mirrored waves of air
are breaking in the clouds, the woolen ghosts
seep out of cast-off clothes, and squeeze
beneath the laundry door to loiter
in the garden.

They dance and laugh and play
strange games non-woolen people
cannot understand, and just
last week they rearranged the magnet
letters on my tumble dryer—

Continue reading

the shallow end

commuting in hyperspace

The i-coupé makes its debut.

So silvery and sleek, and quiet
as a mouse trying to purr,
no steering, no gearstick or pedals.
The salesperson kept on talking,
but I was already sold.

It doesn’t have a motor at all.
A universal transport moves you
to a nearby timeline, where
the i-coupé’s a little further
down the street.

Continue reading

a waspish day

six more Sundays

Everything is ordinary, the rain birds
said, and I believed them, though
the morning breeze had blown
my cat away, and the wasps set up
a circus in the bedroom.

When I voiced a few concerns, they told
me that the wasp show must go on,
and when I hinted at a discount on the door,
they insisted I must pay full price.

Continue reading

the parasitium

the parasitium

They call the parasitium a paradise, they
tell us we’re all safe beneath its dome,
but I’ve heard rumors there’s another
land outside—if we can only loose the ties
of our dependency—a place where each
wild star might cast its light.

By day I wander in the markets,
stop before the soap box preacher
who swears that only those without
a heart are truly pure, that they
alone will know a rational salvation
in the world beyond the plastic.

Continue reading

inconstant street

Inconstant Street

I live in a house on Inconstant
Street, with weeds for a garden
and shutters that always stay shut.
I know for a fact that the world is
my oyster—it’s glued to a rock
and I can’t prise it open.

Penny Lope left a note in everyone’s mail,
an invite to a party to be held
in the street. But I didn’t get one,
so I asked her the reason.

Continue reading

holiday cruise


Seven memorable days in the Orion Spiral for $99/night all meals incl.

In twenty sixteen, three craft from
deep space appeared over Earth
on discrete stratospheric

We tracked them with lasers,
and launched several missiles
that turned the three ships to a
luminous mist, and a sunset
in glorious colors.

Continue reading

good news for axolotls

great fish deity

The goddess of start-ups had been rather careless.
To correct her mistake, she wiped out the
with a meteor strike, and
resolved to pay
more attention.

Her very first effort had begun quite well—
the axolotls were amusing, there was
no doubting that, and mother nature
turned up to admire them too.

Continue reading

nadi and the sun


Day in, day out, Raoni turned the golden
handle in the temple. The greatest honor,
the elders said, because his turning
caused the sun to arch across the sky.
But he didn’t know that Nadi
had been busy in the solar vault.
She’d fixed a belt around the shaft
that ran to the sun machine,
and a pulley with an arm attached
stirred water in a tub of clothes,
to automate her washing.

Continue reading

the third dimension

ThirdDimension‘The Third Dimension’ will appear in Plasma Frequency Magazine. PFM re-emerged in 2016 with help from Kickstarter, and they’ve introduced a number of new features including a rookie author program, revamped editorial process, and broad reading choices with stories free on-line as well as in print and ebook editions.

‘The Third Dimension’ is pretty much sci fi, as long as you can suspend your disbelief—I find a glass of wine helps, except with politicians—and it owes something to Ian R MacLeod’s magical novel The Light Ages, plus a few other works that I won’t name to avoid spoilers.

Continue reading

danta in black

‘Danta in Black’ will appear in Chappy Fiction’s time travel anthology. Chappy Fiction is a new publisher, and they’re off to a great start as far as I’m concerned. Firstly because time travel, and secondly because they’re paying professional rates to authors.

I connected my apocalypsometer to a print out of ‘Danta in Black’ and the needle jumped around all over the place, so I can’t say whether it’s apocalyptic or not, but unsurprisingly, it’s about time travel.

Continue reading


dragon development stages

Yesterday’s a mirror where you
see no more than your reflection,
and tomorrow hides beyond the
windowpanes. But today is filled
with mysteries and wonders, and all
you have to do is look.
That was what Louisa told me
on the day she said goodbye,
before my weather turned to winter,
with snow clouds in the bedroom
and hailstones in the hall.

Continue reading

should poetry and prose make sense?

aleatoric evolution

Here are 5 reasons to make your writing incomprehensible—

  • impenetrable words allow the reader to focus on the prosody
  • mystification creates enigmas, unresolved mystery
  • if the meaning is obscured the reader can invent their own
  • writing that doesn’t make sense is more likely to be original, less likely to feel familiar
  • life makes very little sense—to me at least—so why should writing?

Continue reading