Sunday, April 9, 2017

Poem Nominated for the Rhysling Award!

Many of you know I belong to the SFPA (Science Fiction and Fantasy Poetry Association).

This year I was honored to be nominated twice for their yearly Rhysling Award. Voting is not yet complete, and winners are usually announced in the summertime. Anyway, here is the nominated poem in their "short poem" category. (And to read the poem nominated in the "long poem" category, go here.)

Build a Rocketship Contest: Alternative Class A Instructions and Suggestions

by Wendy Rathbone

Section One

it shall please the wind
if you make your rockets
of silk and balsa
for this journey is not about
it is all emotion
how trembled sands
and vortex seas
make a language
in the shape of yearning
how the wings of your
star-boat flicker
to a thrill
more about the hunter
less about the hunt

Section Two

Past winners include rockets made of
magnetic poems
and Victorian lanterns
a candle in every porthole
your vessel may run on the fuel of wine
trailing fumes of oakmoss and patchouli
you will be rated on the colors of
its vapors
how well they curve and twine
in pink torrents or Mediterranean blue
and if the black fog of the thrusters
can be distilled to ink
for the old parchment logbooks
your captain will require

Section Three

your final judges--
all former starship commanders
who have suffered the inexorable isolation of space


Thanks for reading!