Archive for Artemis Rising

PseudoPod 584: ARTEMIS RISING 4: The Drowned Man’s Kiss

Show Notes

“The Drowned Man’s Kiss” is inspired by the works of the Greek Poet Nikos Kavvadias: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nikos_Kavvadias

In his poem “Esmeralda” there’s this verse: “Come sweet dawn, the drowned man kissed you.” And the story was born from that, playing as it went with the theme of the cursed dagger, which also features in another of Kavvadias’ poem, “To Machairi” (The dagger).


Longtime listeners or backers of our Pseudopod 10 Year anniversary will be familiar with the artistic work and madcap visions of Jonathan Chaffin of Horror In Clay.  He makes fine horror-themed tiki mugs, art, and ephemera. He made a Cthulhu tiki mug, before that was a thing, and a cask of Amontillado and an Innsmouth Fogcutter.  Now, he has a warning for you. Somewhere in the infinite multiverse, or just on the other side of this shadow, the King In Yellow awaits. “The Pallid Mask” from Horror In Clay is a 8in tiki mug inspired by love for the linked short stories of Robert W. Chambers, and every subsequent writer caught by that fateful play.

The mug is available on Kickstarter, and will ship in August. The mug is part of a collection with companion pieces like a custom-written D6 tabletop RPG module and a Mai Tai glass from the mythic “Shores of Carcosa” restaurant.  Learn more on Kickstarter by searching for “Pallid Mask” or at Horror In Clay.


The Drowned Man’s Kiss

by Christine Lucas


Last night, I dreamt of the drowned man again.

It starts with a murmur. A prayer, slithering through a sleeping shipmate’s lips. Or perhaps a confession, or a memory caught in the fog of the ghostly hours before dawn. It lingers little down here, in the stale air heavy with the stench of urine and unwashed bodies. Soon it rises higher, amidst the sails and the riggings, hungry for fresh air. Then comes the scratching against the ship’s hull. Grip by grip, claw-like hands dig into the wood dragging upwards God knows what.

I lay still on my hammock, squeezing my eyes shut. I don’t dare to steal a peek at the narrow stair leading upwards, to the main deck. But I hear the slow drip of water—stagnant, black water mixed with putrid drool and I gag at the stench. Once, when I was a young fool, I did dare a glimpse. Never again. I’ve seen enough of the corpse sprawled across the upper steps, its torso reaching downwards, the rest out of sight. Grey, bloated flesh bathed in the milky light of early dawn. Bone grinds on bone as he turns to seek me out amidst the slumbering sailors. One eye dangles on its decaying cheek, the other socket a dark nest for crabs. (Continue Reading…)

Artemis Rising 4: Hecate Awakens


During the month of September, PseudoPod seeks submissions to celebrate ARTEMIS RISING, a special month-long event across the Escape Artists podcasts featuring stories by women and nonbinary authors in genre fiction.

Stepping in as guest editors for our fourth annual ARTEMIS RISING event is PseudoPod Assistant Editor Dagny Paul and Mothership Zeta Assistant Editor Karen Bovenmyer. (Continue Reading…)

PseudoPod 536: ARTEMIS RISING 3: Meat


Meat

by Sandra M. Odell


A poster on the far wall of the crowded cafeteria chamber shows an identical man and woman in coveralls and happy smiles with their hands on the woman’s pregnant belly.  The caption at the bottom reads: A REPRODUCTIVE WORKER IS A HAPPY WORKER.  MED CALL TO SCHEDULE YOUR NEXT SEXTIME TODAY.

Ollie puts her hands to her belly, her empty belly.  Three miscarriages in the last eleven cycles.  Only two more chances for a live baby before the overseers stuff her in a containment suit and ship her to processing half a kilometer below the meat farm.  No one comes back from processing.  “My baby won’t look like everybody else’s.  It’ll be different.  Better.  Everyone will know it’s my baby.”

Across the table, Charlie shrugs and keeps shoveling meat porridge into his mouth.  Like everyone else in the meat farm.

She looks around the cafeteria.  The same faces, the same voices.  Sluggo.  Mary.  Abner.  Patty.  Gwen pulling her hair out one strand at a time.  The woman who eats rats.  The bald boy who constantly bangs his head against the wall until he passes out.  All crazyheads.

Ollie picks at a few of the darker lumps in the center of her bowl, takes a bite, says to Charlie, “How many babies do you have now?  Five?  Six?”  When he doesn’t answer, she continues, “I went to the nursery before shift.  You have six crib babies and two in the walker room.  Do you ever go to the nursery?”

Charlie shakes his head and keeps eating.

Ollie pushes her bowl away.  “What’s your fertility rating?  Nine?  Nine-point-five?”

Charlie scrapes the last bits from the side of his bowl.  “Don’t care.”

Ollie stares at him.  “How can you not care?  I don’t have one baby and I care.”

Charlie taps the side of her bowl with his spoon.  “You gonna finish that?” (Continue Reading…)

PseudoPod 535: ARTEMIS RISING 3: The Lady with the Light

Show Notes

PseudoPod wants to draw your attention to an anthology that dovetails nicely with Artemis Rising.

Sycorax’s Daughters, is a new volume of dark fiction and poetry and it is our understanding that this is the first horror anthology written entirely by Black women. It explores the intimate details of cultural nuance, race, and gender. Sycorax’s Daughters mission is to work “as a visionary space where Black women explore horror on their own terms.”

Those familiar with William Shakespeare’s The Tempest may remember Sycorax. She is an African sorceress operating as “the absent presence” throughout the play. While never on the stage, she is influential. She haunts the white male characters. She refuses to be excluded from the story.

 


While we’re talking about anthologies, let’s mention For Mortal Things Unsung.

If you liked “Standard Procedure” by Dagny Paul at the beginning of this month or “The Lady with the Light” by Mel Kassel, you should go pre-order our anthology. Both of those stories were originally published in our 10th anniversary anthology. If you backed our kickstarter, your copy showed up in February. If you missed out, it will be available for purchase at the end of March for your reading pleasure.


 

 

 

 

I’m enthralled when I arrive at the house in Hawaii. I see so many things that my mother would call “wonders”: sea turtles heaving themselves up from the surf, leaving clumsy sandangels; jellyfish dying slowly in the sun; seaweed pods that burp out air, the breaths that they held for years.  

Not everything is a wonder, of course. There are fish bones and dollops of seagull shit and women with floppy hats who coo over shells. But the ocean still surprises me. It coughs up newness now and again for me to discover, usually in the morning, when I leave the cat chewing on his food and walk down to the shore.

I establish a routine to keep myself from seeking out other tourists: wake up, walk along the beach, write for a few hours, eat lunch, watch a movie, go to The Log for dinner and exactly two beers. The people at The Log encourage me to bring in fresh pages for them to read aloud. To them, writing is a grand gesture, the mark of a man who can assemble his thoughts in a secret language. I tell them that the book is bad, and they don’t care. 

The book is bad. It’s worming itself out of me like a mucus. Better to spit it than swallow, but when I look at it, I’m disgusted. The main character is a detective. I’ve never met a detective, but I’m pretending to be Reggie Barns, a person who holds a pistol without wondering what to do with his thumb.