Black Petals Issue #94 Winter, 2021

BP Artists and Illustrators
BP Guidelines
Mars-News, Views and Commentary-Chris Friend
Basement Dweller-Fiction by Justin Swartz
The Beating of Their Wings-Fiction by Brian Maycock
Does the Bogeyman Live Downstairs?-Fiction by Clive Owen Barry
Dark Little Boxes-Fiction by C. M. Barnes
Death by Midnight-Fiction by Charlie Cancel
Forearmed-Fiction by Jan Cronos
Inconceivable-Fiction by Rich Rose
The Wolf's Den-Fiction by J. B. Polk
Treachery-Fiction by Ramon F. Irizarri
Tumour Wakes Up-Fiction by Alexis Gkantiragas
The Opal Ring-Fiction by Michael Dority
Flora and Fauna-Flash Fiction by Roy Dorman
Gnaw-Flash Fiction by Tony Kidd
Mad Money-Flash Fiction by Cindy Rosmus
Madonna of the Damned-Flash Fiction by Hillary Lyon
Special Teeth-Flash Fiction by KJ Hannah Greenberg
The Death Set-4 Poems by Hillary Lyon
Five Haiku-Poems by C. D. Marcum
Misanthrope-Poem by Donna Dallas
The Wish Tree-3 poems by Christopher Hivner
Nebulous-3 poems by Juan Manuel Perez
The Sphinx at Night-5 Poems by Meg Smith
Nameless-Poem by David Barber



David Barber


Over time the scars become less livid,

and straggling hair conceals the suture line

where cranium was lifted like the top

of a soft-boiled egg. The sexton watches

him heaping up soil, a whiff of decay

masked by the unwholesome damps of the grave.

Cemetery work, where it all began.


Working against the clock of corruption,

Frankenstein had scant time for the tricky

facial nerves. Despair, rage and grief all look

the same; happiness he has yet to try.

The war, he murmured, with a face like stone

when his cicatrix were uncovered once,

guessing such cruelty would be believed.


He no longer strangles the living things,

the dogs, the sheep, the ragged men he meets

along the road – punishment for being

part of God's creation when he is not.

His maker shocked the cold flesh into life

careless of any meaning it might have,

and what was nothing once is nameless still.



David Barber lives in the UK. His poems have sometimes appeared in Star*Line, Apex, Strange Horizons and Asimov’s. (He framed the cheque). Though nominated, he has never won the Rhysling Award.

Site Maintained by Fossil Publications