edited by Shannon Connor Winward
Introduction to Issue 22 • Ghosts
Welcome to the “Ghosts” issue of Eye to the Telescope: a truly supernatural issue in both size and scope.
From an early age, I have been consumed with the question of what happens after we die; perhaps not the most psychologically healthy preoccupation for a little girl, but certainly a fruitful one for a budding speculative writer. In literature, as in real life, I am fascinated with ghosts—specters, hauntings, poltergeists, bean-sidhe, È Guǐ,—stories of spirit sightings that suggest our souls go on about their business even after our bodies go into ground.
If the response to this issue is any indication, I am not alone in my specto-philia: we received a record number of submissions for Eye to the Telescope #22, of which twenty-seven manifest now before you.
I’m happy to report that over half of the contributors to this issue are fresh blood for ETTT, with offerings along a wide range of speculative genres and ghostly themes.
Though the quality of submissions was overwhelmingly strong, I favored those that challenge the old ghost story tropes we are used to. Through Eye to the Telescope, the Science Fiction Poetry Association aims not just to feature speculative poetry but to define and then redefine it—to bring the poetry of the future into sharper focus here and now.
Thus, the poems in this “Ghosts” issue posit unusual, unexpected visions of afterlife. Some are more far-out than others, but all seek to explore the unmeasured places—the impossible phone call, the uncanny weather, the haunted oceans of earth and not-earth, the shadows between pages, steps, spoonfuls. I hope you brought a spectacular appetite—and a flashlight.