From Modern Mythcraft to Magical Surrealism

Halsing for the Anchylose

They made the finest things
of bone and zealous shell:
homes for the scholars who
scuttled maze-like down
into their recondite holes
to resurface with gasped,
grasped pearls which seed
quixotic exquisitions
and ended always in death
and erasure; masks, too,
for the squalid of heart,
which hid and rendered animate
their unsuitable bent,
their burdensome loathing of life.

Like all constructed things,
none satisfied; all were shadows
cast by light, a pantomime
of the extinctions which
birthed them.

Look, you living, to those who
lived and are gone. Dream,
if you can, their onerous
weight, their limitless absence.

Stewart C. Baker

Stuart C. Baker

Stewart C Baker is an academic librarian and author of speculative fiction and poetry, along with the occasional piece of interactive fiction. His fiction has appeared in Nature, Galaxy’s Edge, and Flash Fiction Online, among other places. Stewart was born in England, has lived in South Carolina, Japan, and California (in that order), and now lives in Oregon with his family­­—although if anyone asks, he’ll usually say he’s from the Internet where you can find him at https://www.infomancy.net/