Wednesday, February 13, 2013

My Science Fiction Poetry

Yet again, I've run across the claim that all science fiction poetry is bad. It seems to me that this claim pops up every now and then in the genre writing community. While I will admit that I'm not a very big fan of much of the poetry written today, science fiction or otherwise, I think it is a bit drastic to condemn all science fiction poetry as invariably bad.

Of course, this got me thinking about my own science fiction poetry. While I will admit that my fantasy and horror works may be stronger than most of my science fiction works, and most of my science fiction verse may be so-so at best, I do believe that I've composed a few science fiction gems.

Well, good or bad, treasure or dreck, here is my current back catalog of science fiction poetry:

Silicon Searchers

pulsing with life
pulverize rocky worlds,
probing planetary scraps for
lost kin.

© 2012 Richard H. Fay
Originally published in Tales of the Talisman, Volume 8, Issue 1, August 2012.

Cosmic Ship of Dreams

Pure thought
powers this craft
across the vast cosmos.
It sails from star to star as time's
tide ebbs. 

© 2008 Richard H. Fay 
Published in Aphelion, November 2011.

Last Thoughts of a Cosmic Fighter Pilot

Shields and thrusters spent;
Photon cannon dead.
Adrift on the line
As saucers break through.

Warning sirens blare
While fried circuits blow.
Smoke blurs reddened sight
As I think of you.

Recall soft green grass
Beneath our bare feet. 
Hear birds sing sweetly
As they welcome spring.

Spy your smiling face;
Taste your loving lips.
Feel heated passion
As my ship explodes.

© 2011 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Aphelion, August 2011.

Death's Ship 

Swifter than a gamma ray,
Sleeker than a comet's tail,
Darker than a black hole's heart,
A grim ship hurtles through space
In search of the cosmic damned.

Constructed from crystal tears
Reinforced with blackened bones,
Propelled by a stream of souls,
That fell craft crosses the void
To bring death amongst the stars.

Carrying galactic plagues,
Spreading stellar diseases,
Fomenting hatred and war,
Death extends his chilling touch
Across this vast universe.

Blazing toward dying suns,
Homing in on condemned worlds,
Soaring through smouldering skies,
The reaper rides a rocket
To collect the cosmic dead.

© 2011 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Aphelion, June/July Issue, July 2011.

Wondrous Gobbledygook

On a wonderful Nagoogoo morn,
While the bumox skip across the fwa,
I strum the strings of my zidipip
And slowly sip a gurgle burgle
Beside the pink waters of Baffbee.

On the puboo of a keckleschmeck,
I spy a blue-green fuguwordle
Crawling upon an etafal leaf.
I pluck a crimson syton flower
And place it in Zabugana's hair.

On a glittering Nagoogoo night
Wududolons wing across Phreetum
And the violet shlubiyemps sing.
A gentle breeze blows off of Baffbee
As Zabugana lies next to me. 

© 2011 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Aphelion, April 2011.

Texas Stargazin'

Saunter out onto the wide open range
Amidst prickly pears and lowing longhorns.
Gaze up into that great big Texan sky
And ponder the wonders of the heavens.

Draw cowboys in that glittering cosmos.
Spy Pecos Bill cracking his rattler whip
And wrangling a gigantic stellar steer.
Predict your future in their shining trails.

Mark the flaming course of a shooting star
Burning so bright across the firmament.
Make just one wish before it disappears,
But hope it's not the last this awesome night.

See lights landing upon the desert sands,
Then greet green-skinned visitors to our world.
Climb aboard their glimmering silver ship
To witness the marvels of outer space
Close up.

© 2010 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Abandoned Towers, Issue #7, November 2010.

Temporal Crack 

temporal crack
steel man meets allosaur
dragon slays knight

© 2009 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Aphelion, May 2009.

Clash of Tempered Steel 

clash of tempered steel
armoured gladiators meet
robotic war games

© 2009 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Scifaikuest, February 2009.

They've Come For Me Again 

Bright lights,
strange silhouettes,
voices inside my head
signal my departure from Earth
once more.

© 2008 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Aphelion, November 2008.


Star lights,
Earthward falling
offspring of distant suns
plummet through dark skies suffering

from worlds beyond
human belief prowl this
steamy Brazilian night searching
for prey.

spirits glimmer
above my veranda,
flashing green and red as they stalk
their game

glittering entities
catch me in crimson beams to drain
my life.

Fell fire
sets flesh ablaze
while ionised blood boils.
Ebbing vitality feeds those
fey lights.

© 2008 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Hungur, Issue 7, All Souls' Night 2008.

Midnight Encounter on Merais Minor 

On a planet far from my native world,
Loneliness creeps in with the evening's gloom,
Overpowering my better judgement,
Leading me toward a perilous path.
Craving for companionship propels me
Down this trading town's mean and dirty streets.

Rough rejects roaming dingy metal walks
Wear wretched faces painted sickly hues
By the jaundiced glow of sodium lamps.
Turning away from my hungering gaze,
None seem fit to satisfy my desire
Until she steps out of the midnight murk.

Ebon eyes as dark as the depths of space
Reflect my look of longing and despair,
Drawing me closer to her maroon face.
Our lips soon meet in an electric kiss,
Sparking a dreadful, soul-consuming blaze.
Lost, I blindly follow her into hell.

Deathly cold hands grasp a hold of my own
As the temptress takes me down winding tracks
Thrusting deep into the town's rotten heart.
Through wisps of swirling crimson haze I see
Bizarre symbols carved onto damp stone walls
And black shades gathering all around us.

Churning air grows thick with hypnotic fumes,
Chilling my limbs, robbing me of my will.
Swaying in tune to a fell droning chant
While dancing wraiths become a part of her,
My captor's terribly seductive form
Dissolves into a heaving, pulsing mass.

An abhorrent beast quivers with delight,
Sensing the rapid drumming of my heart.
Glistening feelers reach out for my throat,
Searching for vulnerable, blood-filled veins.
Powerless to resist their lethal touch,
I feel no pain as life is drained away.

© 2008 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Hungur, Issue 7, All Souls' Night 2008.

Ethereal Journey

Deep within the crumbling pages
Of a forgotten ancient tome,
I uncover an arcane spell
That opens a hidden doorway
Out of the material plane.

Mystical words roll off my tongue;
I pass through the cosmic portal.
Freed from the bounds of mortal flesh
I encounter eldritch beings
Both beautiful and horrific.

Strange violet phantoms soar past
Riding the ethereal tides.
Their translucent bodies glisten
In the phosphorescent glimmer
That permeates the dim grey void.

Glowing orbs glitter like diamonds
As they dance in frantic circles.
I extend my pale spectral hand
Toward the brilliant spectacle,
But the lights sputter and go out.

Rainbow hued beasts swarm about me.
Their amorphous forms wax and wane
As their tentacles touch my soul.
Finding my presence distasteful,
They retreat back into the murk.

Shadowy ghosts slip into view
Ere they fade into nothingness.
Their thin ragged bodies billow
Like the wretchedly tattered sails
Of a dismal storm-battered hulk.

Troubled by the sorrowful sight,
I pull my weary spirit back
Along the gossamer tethers
Tied to my corporeal shell,
Then fall exhausted to the floor.

© 2008 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Bewildering Stories, Issue 301, August 11, 2008.

My Alien Love

My love’s maroon face lights up the dim night
Whenever she is snuggled next to me.
Her thousand and one pale eyes glitter bright
Like starlit sparkles in a wine-dark sea.

I take her seven-fingered hands in mine
And swear a solemn promise to be true.
Her sorrel tentacles, so soft and fine,
Pulse with electric lights, both white and blue.

She came to me one clear and lonely eve
As I stared up at the wide, starry sky.
Some call her a beast and say I should leave,
But I could not bear to bid her goodbye.

Must I be doomed to a sad, loveless fate,
When my heart only yearns for a soul mate?

© 2008 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Bewildering Stories, Issue 300, August 4, 2008.

Green Chitinous Domes

green chitinous domes
buzzing atop purple trees
insectoid city

© 2008 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Aphelion, Issue 123 Volume 12, July 2008.

Galactic Road Trip 

Time and space being relative,
One can always burn the former
To travel through the latter.
Fire up the plasma drive,
Pack your environment suit,
Tune in an ambient wave,
And go for a galactic joy ride!

Zip to the Zynterra System.
Sip some puguberry wine
At the Corrosive Cafe.
Watch the blue binary suns set
Over the yellow Sulphur Sea.
Pay your bill (or not) and take off
Before the acid tide surges in.

Rocket to Ragobomax.
Witness the rainbow ion storm
And get an energizing jolt
From the glowing electron stream.
Visit the robotics chop-shop.
Buy a chrome-plated co-pilot
And program in the next stop.

Star hop to Hyptaris.
See qualumps cross the orange sands
And follow the Strill caravans
To the celestial bazaar.
Make your way to the Darkside Club.
Dance the eternal night away,
But leave before the end of time.

Dive into the nearest wormhole,
Slingshot through the fifth dimension,
Accelerate faster than light.
Break the temporal barrier,
Spy the universal secrets,
Give your past self a friendly wave,
Then sail the solar winds home.

© 2008 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Tales of the Talisman, Volume IV Issue 1, Summer 2008.

Green Grass 

green grass
grows upon Martian earth-
alien invader

© 2008 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Aphelion, Issue 122 Volume 12, June 2008


titanium bones
grow synthetic tegument
deadly creation

human encounter
enables social program

government system
accesses secret data
target acquisition

strategic promise
precedes political rise
android accession

artificial man
amongst the ruling elite

© 2008 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Bewildering Stories, Issue 288, May 2008.

Artificial Form

artificial form
brain and heart of stolen flesh
cyborg creation

© 2008 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Aphelion, Issue 121 Volume 12, May 2008.

Minute Murderer

minute murderer
a planet’s people wiped out
nanobot virus

© 2008 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Scifaikuest, Issue 20, May 2008.

Wander the Ether 

wander the ether
drift past strange and frightful beasts
bodiless journey

© 2008 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Scifaikuest, Issue 20, May 2008.

Demons of the Dark Nebula

With engines burned out by an ion storm,
An Earthling vessel hangs dead in deep space.
Explorers come to probe the black unknown
Stoically face a bleak, lonely fate.
Adrift amidst a mass of sooty dust,
Men wait for aid they know will never come.

Something stirs within the nebula's heart.
Shards of shadow detach from the dim cloud.
Dark creatures from the dawn of creation
Are drawn toward the vibrant pulse of life.
An ageless evil enters the doomed ship
As cosmic devils seek fell nourishment.

A chill slithers through the disabled craft,
Carried along conduits and corridors
By an impossibly palpable draught.
The crew shivers in their Spartan quarters
As cold fingers rob their bodies of warmth
And brave resolve gives way to abject fear.

One by one the hapless humans fall prey
To wraiths hungry for the essence of life.
Each blames the others for their dreadful state,
Unaware of the danger in their midst.
Frayed tensions lead to mad accusations
As more drained corpses are cast into space.

Strange silhouettes slip along silver walls
As fiery-eyed spectres descend upon
The ragged remnants of humanity.
Terrible dreams lead to nightmarish deaths
As fey demons absorb vitality
From the lifeblood of the dying mortals.

Sated, the shades depart the lifeless ship
And return to their nebulous abode.
They glide back into the welcome darkness
To rest for another eternity
While a titanium mausoleum
Spins slowly in the blackness of deep space.

© 2008 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Hungur, Issue 6, Walpurgisnacht 2008.

Rainbow against Black 

rainbow against black
birthplace of shining children
spiral nebula

© 2008 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Illumen, Issue 8, Spring 2008.

Holiday on Phreetum Prime

Twin red suns rise over a crimson sea
As wudols twitter a raucous chorus
Amongst the majestic etafal trees.
Saunter beneath the weeping purple fronds
And sip a cup of sytunn flower tea
While wine-stained waters kiss a chartreuse shore.

Sail the ruby waves on a solar sloop.
Watch black-winged tijucks fish for mugaspits.
Feel the droning hum of an ulorn’s song
As it dives right under your silver ship.
Weigh anchor beside Glastornak Island
And marvel at its tall crystalline spires.

Return to your quaint cliff side veranda
In time to see the blue shubiyemps dance.
Laugh at their crazy mating rituals,
But then shed a tear when the males drop dead.
Join the joyous feast and masquerade
To honour the fatal change of seasons.

Rest quietly beneath the yellow gaze
Of Phreetum Prime’s seething volcanic moon.
Spy golden sprites flaring in the night sky
As ion storms clash in the stratosphere.
Be lulled to sleep by a burgana’s trill
As a soft breeze blows across the dark sea.

© 2008 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Star*Line, March/April 2008.

Unidentified Funny Object 

zipping silver disk
brief joy ride to planet Earth
galactic jokester

© 2008 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Aphelion, Issue 119 Volume 12, March 2008.

The Birth of Sentience on Aggraboth V

A green jungun raises her head
Out of the black primeval muck.
She spreads her rainbow hued neck frill
And stares at the huge crimson sun.
The sight ignites a mental spark;
Enlightenment widens her world.

Strange ideas course through her brain
And fill her mind with new notions.
"Who am I?" she wonders gravely,
"And what might I be doing here?
How was all this I see first made?
Is there a purpose to my life?
And what may greet me at life's end?"

With clearer vision than before
Her amber eyes look all around.
They espy her scaly comrades
Feeding on some armoured quibbibs,
Oblivious to her wondrous
Contemplative epiphany.

Anxious to share her new-found thoughts
She opens her fanged maw and roars;
Junguns lack a spoken language
To put concepts into real words.
Disappointed at her failure,
She sheds a tear and sinks back down
Into the primordial ooze.

© 2008 Richard H. Fay
Originally published in The Fifth Di..., Edition 10, #1, March 2008.

Intergalactic Getaway

bubbling black pools
under a huge crimson sun
an alien spa

© 2008 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Aphelion, February 2008.

Marriage of Earth and Antares

Fallen star
Two worlds meet
When human greets Antaran
In a meld of minds
And hearts

Soft trills
Speak to my soul
With far deeper understanding
Than mere words
Ever could

Bug eyes
Blazing with knowledge
Of the secrets of the cosmos
Look into my own

Shaggy fur
Glows in the dark
In tune with her emotions
And keeps us warm
At night

Some think
She's only my pet
I smile at their ignorance
Knowing she's truly
My mate

© 2008 Richard H. Fay
Originally published in Sounds of the Night Issue 2, February 2008.

Interdimensional Visitors

voices in the night
fleeting shadows in the hall
tricksters from beyond

© 2007 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Aphelion, December 2007.

Book of Dimensions

Peruse the worm-eaten parchment pages
Of a forsaken cabalistic tome.
Decipher the faded arcane phrases
And recite an ancient mystical spell.
Sidestep through alternate realities
And witness the wonders of creation.

See bright orange skies streaked with golden clouds
In an odd reversed-spectrum universe.
Spy blue-green swocs feeding on crimson grass,
Then follow a jade-skinned native priestess
As she proceeds toward a black temple
To worship her world’s deep violet sun.

Slip softly like a nebulous shadow
Into a shimmering gaseous domain.
Mingle with the pale amorphous phantoms
That glide through the murky grey atmosphere.
Experience existence without touch.
Feel the loneliness of life in that realm.

Glitter amidst a myriad of stars,
Each one a vast incorporeal mind.
Exchange thoughts and dreams with beings of light.
Learn the greatest secrets of the cosmos,
Just to lose all that heavenly knowledge
As your disembodied soul returns home.

Once the strangely wondrous spell is broken,
Carefully close the leather bound cover.
Place the book back upon its dusty shelf.
Leave the mouldering library behind,
But walk away with a bittersweet awe.
Retain the magic of discovery.

© 2007 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Niteblade, December 2007.

Cosmic Tricksters

What's an interdimensional being to do
To have a bit of harmless fun?

Guide your remote-controlled temporal ship
Above the rolling rural countryside.
Hover over a golden field of grain
And leave behind galactic graffiti.
Let the primitives ponder its meaning.

Soar in loops within a clear azure sky.
Ride your personal flier in circles
While wearing a pointy hat and black cape.
Scare the naive local yokels below
With your strange aerial acrobatics. 

Materialize as a pale shadow.
Whisper softly in a young native's ear.
Stomp about and rap loudly on the walls.
Throw crockery and other breakables.
Make mortals think that the dead have returned. 

Gather with others on a grassy hill.
Dance under the argent light of the moon.
Prance about a ring of deadly toadstools.
Attract a human's prying attention,
But then vanish into the murky mist. 

There's a sucker born every minute
On that little blue planet called Earth. 

© 2007 Richard H. Fay
Originally published in Aphelion, November 2007.

The Iltrox

He hunts beneath the pale silver glow
Of Jadtheria's twin crescent moons,
Craving fresh blood to sustain a life
Already thirteen centuries old.
His ancient red eyes scan the dim night
For any sign of his chosen prey.

A serpentine tongue tests the cool air.
It tastes a blue batergoth's sour scent
Carried on the slightest marshland breeze.
Twenty lidless orbs glare eagerly
As the Iltrox spreads his ebon wings
And ascends into the starry sky.

Silent he soars over purple grass,
A sooty shadow in the darkness.
His seven hearts throb with excitement,
Thumping madly like savage drum beats,
Pumping clear blood faster and faster
As he draws near his death-marked quarry.

Warm thoughts of mercy and compassion
Never enter his vast but cold mind.
His arrogant intellect reasons
That nightly sacrificial murder
To maintain his dreadful existence
Is a predestined necessity.

Curved black talons grip his doomed victim
In an inescapable embrace.
Concentric rows of needle-sharp fangs
Sink deep into the batergoth's flanks.
Numbing poisons ease the slow passing
Of the poor being's nourishing life.

The Iltrox feeds, feeling no remorse.
He gorges on the vital ichor
That pours forth from the quivering font.
Once the bloody deed is truly done,
He callously discards the drained husk
And retreats from the advancing dawn.

© 2007 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Hungur, Issue 5, All Souls’ Night 2007.

Nanomite 323

A minuscule probe
Drifts on a gentle breeze
Through an aluminium mesh
Framed in white-painted steel
And into a strange twisted forest...

Sensors detect synthetic material.
Access main memory banks:
Polyamide fibres
Mixed with chemical colorants,
Wound into strands
And woven onto a backing
Upon a hard organic surface.
Further information required...

A gigantic shaggy beast
Thunders dangerously close,
Blotting out the light.
Its sharp retractable claws
Tear at the artificial trees
As its hot breath
Blows like a steamy tempest...

Warning, danger!
Reporting possible aggressive actions.
Registering native creature’s traits:
Internal calcium skeleton,
Endothermic metabolism,
Heart rate 120 per 60 zorts,
Attributes suggest carnivore.
More data needed...

A monstrous mobile engine
Roaring like a thousand rockets
Rumbles over the robot.
A churning, swirling vortex
Sucks up the probe
And deposits it in darkness...

Initiate system recovery.
Visuals impaired.
Sensor intakes jammed.
Latest obtainable readings
Suggest debris mass of mixed origin,
With resident life-forms
And airborne particulate matter.
Further analysis impossible...

After a period of inactivity
The probe’s internal stabilizers
Sense a violent motion.
Once the movement ceases
The blackness closes in
As a metal slab presses downward.
Crushed by massive machinery,
Nanomite 323 sends a dire message
Prior to its total destruction...

Earthlings hostile,
Abort colonization mission,
Repeat, Earthlings...

© 2007 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Bewildering Stories, Issue 259, September 10, 2007.

Cosmic Journey

Meditate upon travel
Through the material plane.
Leave your mortal self behind
As the spirit wanders free.
Let your mind’s eye uncover
The wonders of the cosmos.

Surf the savage orange wind
Of a churning gas giant.
Spy purple methane floaters
Feeding in the swift current.
Avoid the electric death
Of a green ghunglider’s sting.

Watch a red dwarf slowly rise
Over a crimson hued land.
See pink polypods scurry
Up a scaly yellow trunk.
Drift amongst the tentacles
Of a lofty vampire tree.

Sail the ethereal tides
To Kreona’s seething moon.
Ride the hot sulphurous spume
Of an active volcano.
Witness armoured placomorphs
As they spawn in the black ooze.

Get lost on an icy world.
Roam across the frozen plains.
Find no trace of warmth or life.
Feel what it is truly like
To be completely alone,
Then leave that sad place behind.

Retrace your path through deep space.
Return to the Milky Way.
Grab onto a comet’s tail
As it speeds toward the Sun.
Soar back down to Mother Earth.
Bring your weary spirit home.

© 2007 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in The Sword Review, September 3, 2007.


In the looming darkness of an alien world,
Suns slip down in a lavender sky.
Distant stars blaze on one by one,
As shadows creep forth from labyrinthine hollows.

The scream of engines breaks the anxious silence.
Dust swirls thick in the toxic atmosphere
As a silver ship comes slowly to rest
Upon the chartreuse soil of a contorted land.

Explorers claim the planet as their own
And plant their azure flag in the barren ground.
Brave souls probe the black unknown
And rouse things better left alone.

Sodium lamps cast a sanguine glow
Along the seething banks of a sulphurous stream.
From its murky bed a native leviathan rises,
A savage titan towering over its otherworldly prey.

A thousand green eyes glare with excitement
As the sands are drenched with purple gore.
Survivors scramble for the safety of their ship
As the creature begins the evening's feast.

© 2007 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in The Fifth Di..., September 2007.

West Dingleton’s Loss of Humanity

It all started with a strange cloud,
A nebulous mist of colours
Glowing faintly
In the night.

An aurora in the east
Some suggested.
Electrically charged fog
Others said.
Ambient mood lighting
A few joked.

It descended upon the sleepy town
In a dull rainbow shroud.
Noises were muffled,
Bare flesh
No one worried too much
Until the changes began.

Subtle hints appeared at first,
Crooked eyes,
Drooping lips,
Peculiar warts,
Odd tufts of hair.
Deformities soon multiplied
And grew more and more grotesque.
Limbs twisted,
Noses dropped off,
Mouths expanded into 
Gaping maws,
Bulbous lumps of human flesh
Sprouted vestigial limbs.
Their minds remained clear
As their bodies were corrupted.
Tears fell
While tears could still fall.

Word of the calamity soon spread.
Surrounding communities panicked.
The outside world
Shunned the town,
Barricaded roads,
Protected mankind.
Plans were made
To wipe out the creatures,
Destroy the mutations,
Cleanse the land.

The poor people of West Dingleton
Had become something different,
Something monstrous,
Something dangerous,
Something alien,
No longer human.

Or did they?

© 2007 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Bewildering Stories, Issue 256, August 20, 2007.

Scifaiku 3

purple methane swamp
yellow vampire tree
polypod at home

© 2007 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Aphelion, July 2007.

Scifaiku 2

slip free of time's grasp
wander the endless ages
forsaken future

© 2007 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Aphelion, June 2007.


ray gun destruction
end of civilization
alien conquest

© 2007 Richard H. Fay 
Originally published in Aphelion, May 2007.

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