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

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Pg. 65

Poetry by F. J. Bergmann

Vor Längst

(As a Consequence)

There are eleven of us left.

Our enemies remain invisible but deadly.

We compare our altered memory implants.

Deficiencies, to wit: data, drugs, ethics.

Unity: while two are awake, armed.

The walls shake with each strike.

We will deliver what we promised.

More danger when we are present.

Use us, but discard at peril.

The way out is deeper underground.

They thought we were not mortal.

We were given access to weapons.

They wrung hands; we wrung necks.

Our horses were also constructed creatures.

Let them rest before the slaughter.

Though we killed them, we wept.

To our creators all was lawful.

Organic beauties failed to tempt us.

Our countenances could not betray us.

Our control word was lost forever.

Those strange noises are called music.

We drown them with loud explosions.

We extrude our hooks once more.

from a word list in spam: eleven enemies compare wit unity shake deliver danger use way mortal access vorlangst wrung horses rest though lawful tempt countenance word strange loud hooks

F. J. Bergmann

F. J. Bergmann is the poetry editor of Mobius: The Journal of Social Change and freelances as a copy editor and book designer. She lives in Wisconsin and imagines tragedies on or near exoplanets. She was a Writers of the Future winner. Her work has appeared in Asimov’s SFAnalogPolu TexniSpectral RealmsVastarien, and elsewhere. While lacking academic literary qualifications, she is kind to those so encumbered. She used to work with horses. She thinks imagination can compensate for anything.