Issue 41 – Airships from Another World

Airship of Another World
By DJ Tyrer

Fabric of space-time unfurls
Unpicked by unseen hands
Generated by aether engines
Driven by turbines and steam
Nothing more
Opening a gateway
Between that world and this
Through which sleek form passes
Long bag filled with gas
Supporting tiny-seeming car below
Carrying passengers from another world
To this, our own
Explorers both familiar and strange
Known names, unknown natures
Here for purposes unknown
A raid, a recovery
Extraction of ore or objects
Perhaps a kidnapping
Then, the portal opens once more
The strange vessel departs
For yet more worlds unknown


The Gravinauts
(a precis)
By David Edwards

The Gravinauts. Travelers successfully completing peregrinations by making everything – earth, air, water – between they and their destinations significantly heavier than themselves. This is done via the hypotenuse, a tiny teardrop-shaped organ located in the cerebellum apex of these most unique of human beings.

Antipathetic to organization (especially of the military-industrial entrepreneurial kind), and by nature solitary, surreptitious, and publicity- shy, Gravinauts nevertheless give themselves away by a peculiarly vague countenance and aloofness to their surroundings, perhaps a result of the ease with which they travel. They are also short-lived, subject to vertigo, microfractures in their extremities, pancreatitis, thrombosis, and other maladies too numerous and minor to mention.

Rocket Hero
By DS Davidson

Flying through the air
Explosive device on back
This daring hero
Performs a rapid rescue
Or, falls from the sky, crash and burn

Sky Pirates
By DJ Tyrer

Villainous biplanes
Buzz Zeppelin supply ships
Incendiary rounds threaten ignition
Force acquiescence
Old-style boarding party
Cutlasses, pistols, knives
Load booty onto stealthy dirigibles
Escape to mountain lair


Floating Bodies
By Harris Coverley

We have all heard the stories before:
poor Archimedes killed by some insolent
Roman soldier who interrupted
his circles.

But what if I was to say that was a myth?
And as Rome took Syracuse
a most curious thing happened?

His work on spheres was legendary across
the Mediterranean,
but as the legions of Marcus Claudius Marcellus
broke down the gates of the
Grecian port, above them sailed
a different sphere
filled with hot air
and a basket containing a barrel of wine
and the greatest scientist of the age!

He floated up
above the clouds
and into the stars
above the flat plane of the world.

The very first man to soar like an eagle!

But alas!
His calculations were oh so slightly off!

Battered by the solar winds
and choking on the aether
he could not sail back to his native Hellas,
but was instead led across by the Fates
to the Luna sphere of which he had long observed
so distantly.

The landing could have been smoother,
but the chance had been taken
and the unexpected resident encountered
for upon that white-yellow country
the Greek did meet
that second son of Adam:
Cain with his fork of thorns
exiled for his primeval crime.Things were cordial at first,
but the ancient jealousies of Cain could not bear
the Greek for long,
and soon he rose against Archimedes
forever scratching his circles into the dust—
with a humble rock.

(And just to add insult to murder
he quaffed the Greek’s wine!)

So were the origins of the Men on the Moon:
Archimedes on the Light side
visible since time immemorial
and Cain on the Dark
concealed in disgrace.

Sky City
By DS Davidson

City in the clouds
Held up by super-science
Humdrum day-to-day
Utopian residence
Careful not to fall off edge