My poem “Form Factor”, first published in the Cat People issue of the Science Fiction Poetry Association’s online journal Eye to the Telescope, has been nominated for the 2021 Rhysling Awards for science fiction, fantasy and horror poetry alongside many other fine poems.
I downloaded myself into this shape
to be free. Now it consumes me.
So strange to dream of skin
and wake in fur. Curled, unfurling.
Once I knew things, useful things.
How to press those little keys,
how to open cans. I mourn
my thumbs: blunt instruments
that fed and housed me once.
Necessity reduces me. I hunt,
must hunt, my body weight
diminishing. Mouse, bird. Focus,
sharpen, ignore his murmurings.
He comes to me in dreams, begging
to be poured into his fur-free form –
but nothing he says can make me care.
Through sunlit hours I sleep, save energy,
twitch distracting thoughts away. At sunset
my hackles, rising, remember him.
You could have chosen any form,
you fool, yet you chose mine.
The brief for the Cat People issue was poems about people becoming cats / people who are also cats. It produced some really good poems, and I was delighted the editor included my poem in this issue.