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"Skipping Stones"
  Neil Ayres
  E. Sedia
"Death's Little Sister"
  Mariev Finnegan
"Dirt Roads and Ka"
  Berrien C. Henderson
"Lady Glory and the Knave of Spades"
  Nicole Kornher-Stace
"Hard Little Shadows in the Early Morning Sunlight"
  James Owens
"Keep Calm and Carillon"
  Genevieve Valentine
"Problems of the Solid State"
  Alvaro Zinos-Amaro

"Off the Map"
  Ann Walters
"Homage to Al"
  F. J. Bergmann
"Performance"
  F. J. Bergmann
"How To Not Be Here When The Universe Dies"
  Marion Boyer


Homage to Al

by F. J. Bergmann

It had always liked aluminum foil,

although it wondered if its faith

would have wavered if foils of other

metals had been readily available.

It had been a rocketman one year

for trick-or-treating, and even though

the glass jar it had used for a helmet

had gotten stuck on its head, requiring

a trip to the emergency room, it had

become obsessed with the crinkling

rustle of aluminum against its skin,

and always wore a roll or two layered

beneath its clothes. Usually it would

take at least two weeks for substantial

gaps to open, and then, disgustedly,

it would unveil and disrobe and begin

the tedious process of removing

the ruined foil, using the debris to

create more 4-inch rodent figurines

to add to its collection and then

rewrapping itself from rolls it had

sensibly purchased in bulk.


F. J. Bergmann frequents Wisconsin and fibitz.com, and claims to have an MFA from the School of the Americas. Previous occupations include used-book seller, rural postal carrier, illustrator of a manual of interesting diseases, steeplechaser, and failed visual artist. Further attainments include the 2008 Rhysling Award and a third chapbook, Constellation of the Dragonfly (Plan B Press 2008). Both the hairstyle and demeanor are deceptive.