often think
I’m angry or frustrated
when really?

I’m excited.
I’m into it.

“Why are you so frustrated?”
is the most frustrating thing.
I wasn’t till a second ago,

A friend often says
she has no emotional privacy
because it’s all plain
on her face.

For me it’s like
speaking another language
that everyone thinks they know.
They’re translating it wrong.

That’s not happiness
it’s melancholy.
That’s not frustration
it’s excitement.

That’s not depression
oh wait, nope, it is.
Even a blind dog
barks in the right direction

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Is life a series
of milestones
that we continue to see
over and over
because we keep forgetting
it’s a circle?

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The story of my life:
I should be doing work.

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I have a puppy
and I think he loves me
he wants to be near me
(especially if he can hear me)
even when sleeping.

Sometimes I wonder
if he loves me
because I feed him
pet him
play with him?

Then I remember
that’s how I came to love
my family.

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The unlovable person
who is a lovable figure.

I wrote this about myself
long enough ago to have

It’s a trap.

If others claim to love me
I can claim they love the figure.


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Inktober 19: The Imperial Assassin

“Have you heard from your bee?”

“No, sire, but the hive is buzzing. No doubt the little worker bees will have some information to share soon.”

“Be sure it is so.”

The Emperex left the small room, their cloak floating behind them dramatically. If the Queen Bee hadn’t known it was an artificial flourish, she may have been mildly impressed with their flair. As it stood, however, she was the one who created the mechanism.

The Queen Bee waited a few minutes until the emperex was liked in another wing of the royal district of the ship before she left. Her gait was slow and deliberate, but silent. As she walked she scrolled through communications in her cortical implant, looking for word back from her missing bee. The assassin had been sent nearly a shipboard month previously to take out the leader of a free-trade association that stifled new enterprises. She hadn’t heard back, and neither had any of her hives or queens that she’d placed all over the galaxy. She grumbled. The old superstition came to mind, that a bee could only sting once before it died. She hadn’t sent one of her own to kill in decades for precisely this reason. She usually pollinated dissent, instead. The emperex was clear, this time. Death. Directly. They wanted it tied back to the empire. Well, and it would be, especially if her bee’s body was found. At the cost of her reputation, though.

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Inktober 18: The Space Beast

The old woman bustled about in the small galley kitchen. “Just sit on either chair, I don’t mind either.” I looked at the two armchairs; one was clearly sagged and more used than the other, so I left it empty as I sat in the other. A subtle look of pleasure flashed on her face as she walked into the room with a tray. An ancient looking tea set with floral designs and a delicate pair of cups and saucers was laid out precisely on the tray as she placed it down on the table between us. No scones or finger-snacks were provided, but small jars with cream and sugar sat on either side of the steaming teapot.

She poured from the spout in her cup directly, not adding any sugar or cream. In my cup she placed a small strainer as she poured the tea, leaving room when I indicated I would add my own.

“I just love tea,” she said, holding her saucer and cup formally. “This mixture is herbal, a mixture of florals from an Earth-like planet that captures what I’m told is the soul of ‘black tea’ from Earth-past. Isn’t it delightful?” I nodded and stirred in my sugar as she carefully took a sip of her black tea before putting her cup and saucer down. “Now, why have you come to visit me?”

I took a moment to sip at my tea, still too hot. “Well. I was sent here.”

“Ah, that old bounty, dear?”


She grinned “It’s very kind of you to be frank about it.”

“Well, to be honest, I wasn’t expecting all of this. I wasn’t expecting… you? You don’t look like a beast.” She laughed, the sound like little bells. While I watched her, however, I saw a flash of her true nature. Skin sallow, teeth jagged, multi-rowed, eyes bloodshot and bigger than the saucers. It was only a moment, hardly noticeable, more felt than seen.

“My, aren’t you a charmer? No, I suppose I don’t look like a ‘beast’ as you say. In truth I never have. Men fail to recognize that which they cannot understand and to label it as beastly, don’t they? If you saw what you know now to be a butterfly, but didn’t know its name, what would you do what would you call it?”

“Maybe not a butterfly, but I wouldn’t call it a beast…”

“Wouldn’t you, though? You would have no context for its existence. You would not know that it pollinates and feeds other animals. You would see it simply as a waste and a piece of evolutionary trash and fuel. It is something that is fodder for things which are, in fact, beastly.” I could feel her words like silk wrapping my own thoughts and found myself nodding. “This makes it in and of itself beastly.”

“But does that mean that everything is beastly? It all shares in that cycle.”

“Indeed. But not everything lives outside the direct cycle of men. When it does, that is when it becomes beastly.” She sipped some more tea. “And I suppose I am quite beastly in that light.” She turned her cup upside-down on the saucer and replaced it in the tray.

“You exist… outside of the cycle?”

“Oh yes, dear. I am quite a nihilistic creature. I exist and persist because I exist. Not to create or contribute or even intentionally take away. I consume without producing for others’ benefit.” I blinked, my head feeling foggy. “You see, another quality of beastly things is that they tend to be predators or prey. And they are almost always identified by the prey they hunt.” I looked at the tea and put my cup down quickly. “Oh, don’t worry, it’s hardly poisoned.”

When I looked at her it was like I saw her twice. The kindly old woman sitting there and from within her extended the creature from before, jaws stretched wide to devour me. It lunged forward, “you wouldn’t taste quite so good, then, and I do hate tummy aches.”

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Inktober 17: The Old Planet

Is dying the right word for a world that had already experienced four heat deaths and ice ages? Perhaps “undying” is a better phrase, especially because that cycle of renewal is happening again and the building blocks of life are returning to Pandora. Sure, this time around the building blocks are being brought and assembled by terraforming aliens, but even if the world couldn’t quite get the process of life going on its own anymore, it was clear that it would create at least three self-sustaining colonies between 100-400 thousand each. It wasn’t much, but for refugees from a collapsed world, it was enough to have a newer place to have and call home. The planet, to its credit, was pleased by this turn of events, for it had consigned itself to finally die, old and alone, the last celestial body in its solar system. Now it had a purpose again, and though its new inhabitants wouldn’t know it, the world pushed itself back into vibrancy. Never say an old broad can’t keep doing what she’s always done.

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Inktober 16: The Teenage Racers

Cheryl twisted a knob with her left hand while pulling a lever with her right. Her middle hand kept the steering mechanism steady. It was technically an illegal modification, an unfair advantage, but hey, Alzaax literally had ten appendages with opposable digits; just because she came by her third less naturally didn’t mean it was REALLY cheating. If you can’t grow your own appendages, store bought is fine.

The speeding craft shuddered and then jumped forward, suddenly an order of magnitude faster. Cheryl’s com burst with static and then her manager’s voice “…uck are you DOING!? You can’t break FTL on that thing you’ll CRASH” but she ignored him. She’d driven this course 20 times before, she knew this next stretch in her bone marrow, and the cosmic mod she’d gotten to her bone marrow a month earlier meant that she could actually experience FTL now. She punched it, and watched as the entire world slowed to a standstill, with her craft buzzing along at a pleasant, but totally safe, speed down the track. She deftly avoided the racers in front of her, until she was nearly in the lead, positioned herself just right and…

…she dropped out of FTL but the resultant boost pushed her into the first position, Alzaax making a close second. She’d won the race. For the first time, she’d managed to beat the track and a human won. Too bad she had to lose much of her humanity to do it.

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Inktober 15: The Lost Boy and Dog

Ori cried in the busy street, back hunched against one of the outer walls of the station. His dog Fluffy lay next to him, body touching him with eyes on the bustling crowd. Ori sat with his knees pulled up, head buried in his arms. He’d done his best to provide for himself and Fluffy, but with the moratorium on child-labor in the station and a lack of identified parental units, the teenager had little recourse but to beg. He’d just been accosted by a woman who traded in junk a few kilometers down the road, who yelled at him to leave because he was scaring away customers. The boy ran to his current spot.

Fluffy sat guard on Ori and made sure not a damned soul would come near the boy with ill intent. The dog was some sort of mutt, a mix that the cloning-banks freely gave out, but his loyalty and training belied the notion that he was inferior.

An androgyne approached the two, tossing a card in the kid’s direction at a dangerous glare from the dog. 99 Credits, it said. That would be enough to keep the boy and dog in food and kibble for a fortnight at least. Ori never looked up or noticed. The person who left the donation turned and walked away quickly, leaving Ori to whatever misery bound his thoughts, and Fluffy to his guard duty.

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