paperback rider B: sheridarp style


On the roof of the Dreamwalk Library, a Dark Solarian is draining Librarian Millie’s life force, and a fearsome kilowasp cloud (to the nearest power of ten) is descending. The library employee plans to offer his own life force, if he has any, to save Millie, and no-one cares what the penguins are doing.

In my penultimate moments,
I decided I’d reveal my inner life.

You make me nervous, Millie,
you’re not as librarian as you appear.
You’ve taken me so far from science,
my mind is burning in a consequential fire,
and I’d like a coffee.

Fantasies and caffeine, all a-tangle
in your heroic hair. For now,
please keep the penguins company.

Millie’s life force was a showering of refractive light,
dewdrops on a shattered windscreen,
a glister, a precipitate in the air.

She addressed the Dark Solarian.

Poor parasite you are,
always seeking life you can’t possess.
What you steal will leave you
after nightfall, lost in the lunar realm.
You’ve drained enough of me,
it’s time to go.

But the creature came even closer,
and the flux of Millie’s fluid light intensified.


She waited for a time, then threw her arms
around the Dark Solarian.

Let’s consummate our parasite-host relationship.

A solar flare of Millie’s animatric energy
enveloped the sorry creature.
It tried to pull away, to disconnect,
but it was several lines too late.


physics, Sheridarp-style

Matter and antimatter,
in their uncomfortable alliance,
mostly text each other;
minds and anti-minds, over and beneath,
may never touch;
and parasitic anti-dreams
may never meld with the other kind.

Millie’s being, her dream of luminiferous living,
had no time for dreary dead-end parasites.
As she held it, its anti-thoughts were annihilated:
the Dark Solarian imploded in blossoming ultraviolets.

I fumbled in my pockets for my dime store sunnies,
but only found a sparrow.


When the after images had faded and I could see again,
I saw Millie, slightly flushed.
She’d drawn the energy back to herself,
and the parasite Solarian was a pile of dust,
or else the rooftop needed sweeping.

I work for her, I told the nearest penguin,
who was wearing welding goggles.

They auto-darkened
when Millie raised her arms
and sent a fireball of energy
(superfluous to requirements)
shooting upward.

It burnt the kilo-cloud of wasps
to showering cinders,
the remnants of a thousand insects
that were surely guilty of something.

to continue

The penguins wear welding goggles to be sure they see world as it truly is.

is luminiferous a word? (detail above), entirely from 10 minutes of my EEG via VEE, the visual evolution engine, and TIM, the illustrated mind software.

36 thoughts on “paperback rider B: sheridarp style

  1. Pingback: paperback rider B: sheridarp style — inconstant light | Fantasy Gift Sources: Book Reviews, Article Resources, News

    • Thanks, I agree “luminiferous” has a nice ring to it. It originally came to my attention in physics: the outdated belief that the luminiferous ether penetrates everywhere and fills the universe. It’s a pity we scrapped the ether actually. 🙂


  2. Love the opening. Deciding to reveal one’s inner life is not to be taken lightly; Millie’s not the only courageous one it seems. “Her dream of luminiferous living.” But there’s always the dark side, eh? We’re all a mash-up of Millies and Dark Solarians. Your graphic reminds me of patchwork. I’d love a quilt in those hues. Springtime colors. Lovely!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks, BG, and yes, you’ve hit two nails on the head, I’d say. 🙂 Facing up to our less-than-glowing bits is important, and I think even writing helps.

      Glad you enjoyed the artwork: still very much a work in progress, and the programming for the EEG is taking a lot of my time.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Millie is much more courageous and powerful than I thought! I shuddered at this statement: “Let’s consummate our parasite-host relationship.” Reminds me too much of the Alien movies. With fireballs of energy at her disposal, no wonder she isn’t frightened of kilo-clouds of wasps.
    Perhaps the protagonist will finally get a coffee next time? 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • Well, I think I can pretty much guarantee nothing is going to pop out of anyone’s stomach at breakfast. 😸

      With Australian summer coming up, maybe Millie would be handy to have around at barbecues: not just lighting up the grill, she could deal with the mosquitoes. I’m also hoping the protagonist gets a coffee, even paid employment.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Wonderful ! Humorous as ever Steve. I love the pastel shades of the picture as well. These poems of yours are very mysterious in their inventiveness. That all these adventures should be happening to a librarian of all people is very amusing. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. a very interesting symbiotic relationship, where the host and parasite text each other, where usually communication is a one way thing. is the Dark Solarian the new meterosexual male in disuise? ironically i wrote an article on symbiotic relationships just the other day inspired by the movie Venom, my editor says it is perfect for couples counselling. i thought i was writing a scientific piece.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I see what you mean. Interesting such parallels, benefits and costs in relationships. In fantasy and science fiction it is often easy to see which is which: light and dark. It’s rarely that simple with people, even to know where the true light is. The Dark Solarian was apparently taking something of no use to him. I guess that’s more like people, since it wouldn’t happen in nature. Your article sounds great, is it online?


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