As we sweep away dead leaves and look ahead to winter, I welcome you with two new stories!
First from the inaugural issue of Cold Signal Magazine comes…
The two of you stand on the stairwell, framed by wild dreams. From obscured sources vast creatures flee, dragons swimming through space, enormous monsters spreading outwards, abandoning the old limits of the city to explore new and unfamiliar terrains. For a moment, you think they might just pass you by. In the light, Jack is almost gone. You can imagine you’re alone, in the company of strange futures. Then in a rush, they’re upon you. You’re captured in the image of one bright serpent’s eye. You think you might recognize the gaze, that blue on blue. You think she might recognize you too.
You watch as the great beast turns away, its flower crown flashing in the night, its dark wings outstretched to embrace a frightening world.
You see too strange parcels on its back, gifts roped to saddles. “What’re they carrying?” You ask.
“Our stories. The poetry of the city to share with the world.”
“The world is a monster,” you say.
“The world is beautiful,” he says.
When the dragons are gone, you’re left in the dark, where only the bright dreams of the dead remain to love you.Read the rest of my Neo-noir apocalypse in Cold Signal issue 1 https://cold-signal.com/wild-dream-country/
Next, from issue 8 of Grim and Gilded: Look at the Birds
On the edge of shining metropolis does my donkey die, and we mourn him, my kitten and I. The stillness of that skeleton animal, the way he tumbled forth still with our weight on his back.
The caravan has tipped on its side, my maps and papers of devoured lands spill out into the muddy road. I watch them take flight, the little signs of my handwriting kissing a distant sky, all those files, notes, and names. Behold the bureaucracy of apocalypse.
I chase after my papers, gathering up the names of now dead countries to bring them back to proper places. When the caravan moves again, it is my back that aches, my legs that burn, my weight that pulls us forward.
I leave the dead donkey for the birds.
read the rest at https://www.grimandgilded.com/ben-berman-ghan