The Space Cadet Science Fiction Review, Spring 2022 (issue #1)

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Pg. 47

Poetry by Joshua St. Claire

Ghazal at the End of the World

You keep saying, “It’s not the end of the world,”
but it sure feels like we just got the end of the world.

Rigor mortis—a Dead Hand twitch—pops off nuclear warheads.
Armageddon won and lost without a gunshot end of the world.

Keep it hungry or else it will be the robot end of the world.

The Arecibo Message meets the Hercules Globular Cluster.
Couldn’t be Messier—Alien Dreadnaught end of the world.

The Carrington Event wiped out wires worldwide.
Today, it would be a sunspot end of the world.

Before 101955 Bennu hits Earth,
we send nukes and it shatters into a buckshot end of the world.

The Yellowstone Supervolcano spews ash from sea
to shining sea—a whistling teapot end of the world.

We still can’t cure colony collapse disorder.
Soon, it’s extinct bees and an empty honeypot end of the world.

Who let these von Neumann machines out? Everything
you ever loved a grey goo juggernaut end of the world.

Nothing to it—false vacuum decay erases us all
at the speed of light—a let’s hope not end of the world.

Maybe Earth survives it all and we live in peace and harmony.
Unlikely—just a long shot end of the world.

Finally, the sun just burns out into a black dwarf.
An endless winter, a long, cold dry rot end of the world.