Speculative Poetry About Music
edited by Diane Severson
Introduction to Issue 16
When it was suggested I might consider guest editing an issue of Eye to the Telescope, my first thought was, “but I'm not qualified.” Now, whether that is actually true or not, the powers that be convinced me I should do it.
Naturally, as a professional musician, I immediately decided to make my theme for the issue music in speculative poetry. Since I haven't seen so much of it in the past few years since I started reading speculative poetry intensively, I never guessed that we would end up with the most submissions any issue of ETTT has ever received! I agonized over which of the many excellent poems to include and had to exclude many with extreme reluctance. As it is, this is an extremely large issue of Eye to the Telescope.
Music and poetry have gone hand in hand since the dawn of time. Rhythm and rhyme are elements of music and song, and are closely linked to poetry as well. In fact, it is posited that the first poems were most likely also songs, that the first utterances of language were most likely as songs is something I have read. Music has accompanied humans since our beginnings and it is logical that it will always be with us, even as we look to the stars. Fantasy literature is full of references to music as well; why shouldn't Fantasy poetry reference music as well?
You'll find examples of the many ways music can feature in poetry, be it metaphorical or literal, historical or in alternate history, the main character or a minor one, a thing of gods and Creation or of the everyday, as well as music's power over us and what it can do for us. I opted to save poems in musical forms, based on songs, or inspired by them for a subsequent issue.
I'm so pleased with the breadth and playfulness the poets exhibit here. I hope you are too.