The Sending

by F.J. Bergmann


Creation is not so much the materials (semen,

a raw egg, et cetera) as the will—

which you like to think of as your personal charm.

Blood, saliva, and aromatic liqueurs are optional.

Some things are best when cold,

and some should be served molten.


Tell yourself that it is retribution—surely everyone

is collectively responsible for the world's suffering,

and the authors of your particular torment

can stand in for the rest. Really, of course, it is

merely an opportunity to allow you to demonstrate

your hard-won, harrowing abilities. You are trying

for superlatives from those who appreciate

the strictures of the craft.


The shape you give it is a simulacrum

of what they wish to see in the mirror of their—

let's be honest: it's not desire; it's need, an addiction

that watches the dimming multitude of its repetitions

fade to darkening silver. They never see it hovering.

Often, they welcome it over their threshold,

just as they welcome the possessions

they see as extensions of themselves,

the ideologies they cannot afford,

terminal diseases they refuse to acknowledge.

Now, it begins.

F.J. Bergmann's poetry has appeared in Analog, Asimov's SF,

Apex, Dreams and Nightmares, Silver Blade, and a bunch

of literary journals that should have known better. She is the

editor of Star*Line, the journal of the Science Fiction Poetry

Association, and poetry editor of Mobius: The Journal of

Social Change. Her manuscript A Catalogue of the Further Suns

has won the Gold Line Press chapbook contest and will

appear in 2017.