Posts Tagged ‘Vampires’

One gets used to visual media, reading on book pages, movies, even public readings as a sort of live play (see just below, August 5, et al.).  But what about only the words themselves, through the medium of sound?  And hence, in a sort of message tag known only to Facebook, a few weeks ago I received an invitation from LuAnn Johnson of WFIU, the Indiana University Public Broadcasting Station, dating back to about early spring.  Ms. Johnson runs a program called THE POETS WEAVE in which local poets read short groupings of their work on the air. Or more specifically:  Prepare to read one or more groups of POEMS.  Each group should be approximately 4 minutes in length.  Selections should be acceptable for broadcast, (i.e., non-sexually explicit, non-scatological, and expletive free), per FCC restrictions.  It’s best to time yourself reading aloud, and please bring a couple of shorter poems in case we have to exchange a longer one for time.

I’m not entirely new to this, actually, having done a few similar types of readings some years in the past, though the programs here are perhaps a little more complex, involving not only a host-read introduction of the poet, etc., but also from the poet one or more BRIEF QUOTES — anything relating to the poetry you’ll be reading (or poetry in general), or writing, reading, and life.  It can be your own words or from another writer/poet you admire.  You’ll read one quote for each show set, so do bring a copy of the quotes with you; the host will read your bio when she introduces the show.  And also there is that idea of more than just one performance, but perhaps several groups on successive programs.

Anyhow while it took some time (as well as some emails back and forth) to consider quotes, select and time groups of poems, and figure a structure for multiple readings, this afternoon I sent back a proposal for three groupings of poems on the overall topic of Vampires and Things Vampiric, divided loosely into “the Who” (to meet some vampires), “the Where” (on where they might hang out), and “the Attraction,” all from my collection VAMPS (A RETROSPECTIVE).  And graced with suitable quotations from Rudyard Kipling, Bram Stoker, and Sheridan Le Fanu respectively.

More as it develops.

Advertisements

Yes, I’m going through a “thing” with alliterating headlines.  Just a quick note though that the summer edition of STAR*LINE, the journal of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Poetry Association, has just been published in PDF with the print edition to be ready in the near future.  My pig, as it were, in this poetry poke is “What She Learned” (cf. also July 7), a thrilling account of vampirism and education, nestled at the bottom of page 22.  The issue number is 41.3 with more to be reported here, including most likely a cover picture, when the mailed copy arrives, while more information on STAR*LINE and the SFPA can be obtained by pressing here.

The poetic cup runneth full this Saturday with proofs received from not one, but two upcoming publications.  The first in order of fulfillment, that is to say reading the proof sheet and sending it back with minor corrections, was from our fast-moving recent friend ALTERNATE THEOLOGY (ALTERNATIVE THEOLOGIES?), cf. July 1 and 2.  Either title seems to exist depending on the page you go to, but to the chase, my part is the poem called “Tit for Tat,” a “little Willie” in which our naughty lad finds the afterlife not as had been advertised.  The poem itself has been published before, originally in an anthology called GHOSTS:  REVENGE (James Ward Kirk Publications, 2015), but the subject seems one worth repeating and, with one or two minor editorial changes, has been returned.

Then a PDF for the Summer issue of STAR*LINE was perused, with my entry in this one a new poem, “What She Learned,” one of five accepted last February and four of which have already appeared in the current Spring issue (see May 16, April 11, et al.).  Things thus moving fast all around, within the hour that proof was returned as well to editor Vince Gotera with other information requested and a note that no changes were needed.

Wherever you are. . .  Wherever you go. . .  They’re coming to get you. . .  You cannot escape them. . . .  Well, yes, there are airline screw-ups too, the expected hazards of vacation travel, but what about something out of the ordinary?  Horrors to seek of your own free will?

Welcome, courtesy of Robert Dunbar via Facebook’s LITERARY DARKNESS, to Dennis Cooper’s “Halloween for Keeps:  25 Year-Round Worldwide slide_10Haunted and Horror Attractions” on DENNISCOOPERBLOG.COM.  You can’t even wait out the summer to dodge them!

They speak for themselves, in myriad countries, myriad cities, myriad fairs and amusement parks the whole world over, the U.S., Canada, China, Finland, Italy, Spain, England and Japan . . . but also accompanied by brief 7537233328_d6ec934ed2descriptions by author Cooper, plus clickable previews, some long, some short. . . .

Some tacky, some terror-filled. . . .

If you dare . . . press here!

Comes June and with it a bright sunny afternoon, breezy and in the lower 80s and, with that, the start of the Summer Reading Season.  What better way to celebrate, then, than with a new interview of . . . me, this one by UK author and blogger Jacky Dahlhaus, tentatively to go live Wednesday morning?  So three days from now be prepared for more dish on TOMBS:  A CHRONICLE OF LATTER-DAY TIMES OF EARTH, a mention or two (it mustn’t feel left out!) of THE TEARS OF ISIS, the importance of (*ahem*) reviews to all authors, plus details on the inspiration and influence of Poe and Bradbury (with mentions here of Ginsberg and Brecht), whether I start writing with a pen or on the computer . . . well, you may have seen interviews by me before, but maybe this one will have new stuff to say too.  You can’t really tell until you read it, coming up Wednesday.

And a quick second note, Ms. Dahlhaus is looking for a few more interviewees for the summer, if any other writers out there might be interested in some free publicity.  But there are a few qualifications in terms of work already published, more on which can be found at her website by pressing here.

Today’s street mail has brought the current (Spring, 2018) issue of STAR*LINE, the journal of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Poetry Association (SFPA).  This is the one that has four (count ’em, FOUR — cf., also, April 11, et al.) separate poems by me in it, granted short ones, but still four whole poems!  All of these are perhaps a little bit tongue-in-cheek, dealing as they do with the everyday problems of vampiresses on the run, sharks in mermaid-infested waters, zombie hunters seeking their prey, and love-smitten young men in Transylvania.  The poems themselves are scattered throughout the magazine (often tucked discreetly towards the bottoms of pages), the pages which they inhabit being 10, 18, 24, and 34, and with titles like “Never Trust a Vampiress,” “Oh No She Didn’t?,” “From The Zombie Hunters Field Guide:  Tracking the Zombie,” and “The Young Transylvanian’s Guide to Dating:  Taking Your Date Home.”

For those interested, more on STAR*LINE and the SFPA can be found by pressing here.

If a New Orleanian vampiress didn’t have enough problems of her own, Aimée — and her fellow filles à les caissettes (cf. May 2, et al.) — had best take extra care in the bathroom as well.  Or so says Kate Baggaley on POPSCI.COM in “Invasive Treefrogs Have Snuck into Louisiana and They Are Not Good Neighbors.”

To quote Ms. Baggaley:  Cuban treefrogs, which can grow as big as the palm of your hand, compete with native treefrogs for shelter and create a number of nuisances for people.  “They get into the plumbing sometimes and people will find them in their toilets, which is always a surprise,” says [Brad] Glorioso, an ecologist at the U.S. Geological Survey’s Wetland and Aquatic Research Center in Lafayette, Louisiana.

Once thought to be confined in the US to Florida, the Cubano natives may have arrived in a shipment to New Orleans’s Audebon Zoo of several palm trees from Lake Placid in 2016.  Relocated in the elephant exhibit, these refugee frogs have spread into an area between the zoo and the Mississippi where, as the article further explains, [t]hey can clog your plumbing and have caused costly power outages in Florida by short circuiting utility switches.  Cuban treefrogs have also been known to take over birdhouses and lay eggs in pools that haven’t been cleaned.  And if they’ve been hanging out around your door, Cuban treefrogs will sometimes drop onto you as you try to get inside.  “I have no idea why they do that,” Glorioso says.  It could be that the frogs are seeking out warmer or more humid conditions, he speculates.  On top of all this, Cuban treefrogs secrete a noxious slime that causes a painful burning sensation if you get it in your eyes, mouth, or any open cuts.

And the thing is, they’re good at taking over from native species, and they are spreading.  So watch when you flush and, to read more, press here.

So call it two days late, THE SIRENS CALL #38, dated April 2018, is an enormous issue, some 186 pages in all with work crammed in it by forty-eight authors and poets.  With my part in this potpourri, “Casket Girls” (cf. April 3, et al.), not even listed until the top of the second contents page, there noted to start on page 137.  And not only that, you can read it for free!

“Casket Girls” is the origin story, as it were, of the coming of the vampiress Aimée — and “conversion” of les filles à les caissettes aboard the ship with her — to the New World from France, and is based on a New Orleanian urban legend.  Originally published in DAILY SCIENCE FICTION on April 10 2014, this latest spotting just goes to show that you can’t keep a bad girl down, especially should she have a desire to wander.

So even if you’ve met Aimée before, if you’d like to say “bonjour” again (and remember to scroll way, way down to page 137), press here.

Hark, the call:  It seems like everything’s finally settled down, fifty years into the twentieth century.  War is over.  The economy’s booming.  People are on a long exodus from the city.  It’s all settling.

But the occult lurks everywhere…

In sleepovers, as teenagers intone, “Light as a feather, stiff as a board.”  Or stare into the mirror, calling upon Mary.  They scream, convinced something looks back from inside the glass.

New music dominates the airwaves, discordant and wild.  They say it’s the devil’s music.

Strange lights dominate the sky.  Are they Russians?  Little Green Men?  Or something altogether stranger?

Perhaps things are not as settled as they feel. . .

So the job was to recall the 1950s with an occult flavor, the anthology to be called SOCKHOPS AND SEANCES.  Reprints would be okay.  It just so happened I had a story, “Bottles,” originally published in CROSSINGS (Double Dragon 2004; also reprinted in THE TEARS OF ISIS), set in 1958 Cambridge Massachusetts.  Historical accuracy would be insisted on (I lived in Cambridge from late 1959 to mid-1964).  But also with vampires, perhaps a bit chancy, or at least someone who believed in vampires combined with a period fear of Communism.  Still, why not, thought I?

And so today, May 1, International Labor Day, the reply came back from Editor Nicole Petit of publisher 18th Wall Productions:  Thank you so much for your submission and your patience as I deliberated on the stories sent in for SOCKHOPS AND SEANCES.  I am excited to tell you that we will be accepting “Bottles” into the anthology.

More to appear here as it becomes known.

It’s skinny and long (it’s a lot of poems) but here it is, the contents list for the current STAR*LINE (see March 29) with four, count ’em FOUR, poems by me.  Well, they’re very short poems (on a very long list) and spaced out through the issue, but see if you can find them all!  Hint:  The final two have VERY long titles, the fourth perhaps the longest of all (but the first two are shorter).

Departments

Dragons & Rayguns • Vince Gotera
President’s Message • Bryan Thao Worra
From the Small Press • Herb Kauderer
Stealth SF * Flying Blind * Denise Dumars
XenoPoetry: Japanese Scifaiku and Tanka • Shouko Izuo (translated by Natsumi Ando)

Poetry

[spewing] • Roxanne Barbour
[spray of rocks] • Roxanne Barbour
Workshop Exercise 21/08/2337: My Earliest Memories • David Jalajel
UFO • David Barber
[multiple moons] • David J Kelly
[life sentence] • David C. Kopaska-Merkel
[their drone ship came to Earth] • Lauren McBride
The Fallen Angel’s Ace of Wands • Mindy Watson
Why aliens shun India • Arjun Rajendran
[huckster moon] • Greer Woodward
Never Trust a Vampiress • James Dorr
[that] • David C. Kopaska-Merkel
It’s Universal • Marsheila Rockwell
Transported by Song • Herb Kauderer
[easy mole removal?] • F. J. Bergmann
A Cinephile Steps On-Screen • Alberto Sveum
Symbiosis • Chris Galford
[Striped gaiters, breather] • Denise Dumars
Stone Clutched to Chest • Laura Madeline Wiseman & Andrea Blythe
The Holy Firmament of Venus • Mary Soon Lee
Measure • Banks Miller
[alien worm—] • Susan Burch
Widening Gyroscope • F. J. Bergmann
[rising] • Roxanne Barbour
Cost-Benefits Analysis of Being a Zombie • James Reinebold
Till Death Do Us Part • Kathleen A. Lawrence
[a GoFundMe account] • Beth Cato
If Only I Could Sleep • G. O. Clark
Hermes • Jonel Abellanosa
Friends of Traitors • Matthew Wilson
[bottle trees on Mars] • Sandra J. Lindow
When Semi-Benevolent Aliens Conquer Earth • R. Mac Jones
Cosmic Roshambo • John Richard Trtek
[we’re leaving] • Robin Wyatt Dunn
Oh No She Didn’t? • James Dorr
[revealing] • Roxanne Barbour
Archaeopteryx • Robert Borski
[Terrans scooping gravel] • Lauren McBride
Wolf Moon • Susan McLean
[FTL propulsion achieved] • Lauren McBride & Jacob McBride
[cosmology] • Katrina Archer
Flight of Fantasy • crystalwizard
[no need] • Susan Burch
[we buried] • ayaz daryl nielsen
alien sea beams • David J Kelly
A Leaf Fairy Feels Under-Appreciated • Sharon Cote
The Return • Ken Poyner
The Cold Spot • Kimberly Nugent
From the Zombie Hunters Field Guide: Tracking the Zombie • James Dorr
[summer waits for him] • Holly Lyn Walrath
[vampire job fair] • William Landis
Data Value • Patricia Gomes
[close encounter] • Susan Burch
[Irresistible panhandling] • F. J. Bergmann
From Antartican Vibranium Tankas • Eileen R. Tabios
Ghazal • Joshua Gage
Elixir Stores Open for Business! • Ronald A. Busse
[the sound of black holes] • Alzo David-West
Lost in the House of Hair • John W. Sexton
[end of the road] • Greg Schwartz
The Music of the Spheres • Mikal Trimm
Come Embrace Space • Lauren McBride
E pur si muove • Deborah L. Davitt
[nothing’s so beautiful] • Alzo David-West
[red shift] • David J Kelly
[alien pool shark] • F. J. Bergmann
Second Life • Davian Aw
[eruption] • Roxanne Barbour
[for sale: sweet cottage] • F. J. Bergmann
Illiteracy • Scott E. Green & Herb Kauderer
[outside the greenhouse] • Greg Schwartz
The Young Transylvanian’s Guide to Dating: Taking Your Date Home • James Dorr
[alien teenagers] • Susan Burch
[prohibited] • Roxanne Barbour
The Ghost Diet • Robert Borski
Everything started with the Big Bang, they say • Juanjo Bazán
[held to my ear] • F. J. Bergmann
Red in the Morning • James B. Nicola
[the prospect recedes] • David C. Kopaska-Merkel
[heat death of a universe] • F. J. Bergmann
Missouri City, Texas, in a Far Tomorrow • José Chapa
Intruders • Cindy O’Quinn
[Looking at each star] • William Landis
The Plague • Matthew Wilson
Mermaid Warrior • Darrell Lindsey
[star party] • Lauren McBride
[Stiff with chill] • Denise Dumars
Exfil • WC Roberts
[class four body dies] • Holly Lyn Walrath
[guys on a float trip] • William Landis
Shapeshifter Taxonomy • A. C. Spahn

Illustrations

Low Rounders • Denny E. Marshall
First Time on a Swing • Christina Sng
Squirm • Denny E. Marshall

And then a second very short item, the Goth cat Triana had her annual checkup yesterday at an all new vet’s, a bit closer than the one she went to last year, and (the triaba2b4001question local people who know her all asked) she conducted herself like a perfect, if apprehensive, lady.  Or more to the point, she didn’t bite either the vet or his assistant!  GOOD Triana.  (There had been some discussion when I had first gotten her of giving her a name with vampiric connotations, but the decision had been that that might be too much of a red flag — cf. February 12 2017.)  And, pending test results on certain, er, organic samples, her health is good.

Well, with one possible exception to the last, something I’d sort of noted myself as I took her in her carrier to the vet.  She may be getting a tiny bit chubby.




  • My Books

    (Click on image for more information)
  • Chapbooks

  • Poetry

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

    Join 1,535 other followers