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Final Boskone Schedule

FRIDAY, February 17th

Friday 6-6:30 PM, Griffin (Westin)

Panel: Name That Magical Creature
Friday 7:00 – 8:00 PM, Burroughs (Westin)

Creatures from all the known worlds and myriad planes of existence are gathered here to be displayed for the entertainment and edification of the public. Our expert zoologists will attempt to identify the various species of wild magical beasts, gathered from dozens of shadowy realms, competing for the ultimate prize. Audience participation is encouraged: bring your favorite creatures to be identified by our panel of virtuoso beast masters.

SATURDAY, February 18th
Panel: Overcoming Stage Fright and Reading Aloud in Public
Saturday 10:00 – 11:00 AM, Griffin (Westin)

Public speaking is often a difficult thing for many people. Authors may find it especially challenging to read their work aloud. Join us for a discussion on how our panelists prepare when having to give talks or readings, and how they’ve worked to overcome stage fright. As time allows, audience members will be invited to come to the front of the room to read a paragraph of their own work, and receive constructive feedback from our panelists.

Panel: Poetry and Performance
Saturday 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM, Lewis (Westin)

Reading a story aloud and reading a poem aloud take different skills. Or do they? Our panel of poets proffers tips and advice on performing poetry. They will also share some of their own poetry for your listening pleasure.

Panel: How Audiobooks Differ From Books and Why That Matters
Saturday 2:00 – 3:00 PM, Marina 1 (Westin)

Audiobooks are often considered simply ways you can experience books with less effort, or while doing something else (like driving). But must audiobooks be merely epiphenomena of their written forms? How could the genre of audiobooks evolve if the connection with books in print were broken? With text-to-speech software, would they be much different from radio plays?

C.S.E. Cooney, Jeremy Flagg, James Patrick Kelly, Jo Walton
Saturday 3:00 – 4:00 PM, Galleria – Autographing (Westin)

Open Mic: Villains!
Saturday 8:00 – 9:30 PM, Galleria – Stage (Westin)

Live from Boskone … enjoy the unsavory stylings of our program participants and audience members. They share their open mic skills in the second annual Boskone Open Mic, which this year features our favorite fictitious villains! Each person gives his/her best 5-minute villainous performance — story, poem, song, skit, interpretive dance, or whatever! OPTIONAL: For extra-appalling appeal, feel free to come dressed as your favorite fictitious villain!

The Rules:
Boskone members are invited to join our participants in the open mic by signing up for one of the six open slots at the door to the event, which opens for sign-ups at 7:30 p.m. Each performer is given a firm 5-minute time limit (max), including setup time. So a quick transition between acts is key.

SUNDAY, February 19th
Brimstone Rhine Concert”
Sunday 11:30 – 12:00, Lewis (Westin)

Poet and author C. S. E. Cooney performs under her songwriting name, Brimstone Rhine.

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a mythtacular night of story and song

December 2016.
Artists from 6 states & 2 countries.
Classical texts.
Contemporary Mythic Poets.
Original Music.
Over $600 to a local charity.


OVID’S “MEDUSA”/ Song: Cootchie Cootchie, Medusa Baby
(Text for “Cootchie Cootchie” at BR’s Alecto! Alecto!)

PURCELL’S’ “WHEN I AM LAID IN EARTH”/ Song: Dido in Effigy
(Text for “Dido in Effigy” at BR’s Alecto! Alecto!)

EURIPIDES’ “MEDEA”/ Song: Medea’s Dragon
(Text for “Medea’s Dragon” at BR’s Alecto! Alecto!)

HOMER’S “CIRCE” / Song: Circe embedded
(Text for “Circe” at BR’s Alecto! Alecto!)


ACT 2:

Song: Gentle Caliban


Song: Black Widow’s Waltz
Text for “Black Widow’s Waltz at BR’s Headless Bride)

(Text for “Good Neighbors” found at Uncanny Magazine)

Song: Foxgirl Song Cycle 1
(Text for “Foxgirl” at Uncanny Magazine)

(Text for “Pieces” at Stone Telling)

Song: Lady Knight / Pale Lady

(Text for “Abuela” at Uncanny Magazine)

Song: Maggot the Banshee / SHVETA THAKRAR’S “NAGINI’S NIGHT SONG”  / Song: Barrow Brine embedded
(Text for “Nagini’s Night Song” at Mythic Delirium)
(Text for “Barrow Brine” at BR’s Headless Bride)

ARISTOPHANES’ “LYSISTRATA”/Song: Lysistrata, Strut Your Stuff
(Text for “Lysistrata Strut” at BR’s Alecto! Alecto!)

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Hernandez, reading

What strikes me tonight, as Hernandez reads “Entanglements” from new anthology Latin@ Rising, is first, his introduction.

He comes onstage smiling, and he begins by thanking everybody. He thanks the Twenty Sided Store who hosts us, Chris Kreuter for Emceeing us, the audience, everyone.

It is as if the story he is about to tell is his home, and he is set on becoming the host of that small but infinite space. By taking the stage, by expressing his gratitude, he opens his door and ushers us all in.

There is, on his face, an expression of almost beatific sweetness.

It is a smile that hovers over him like a halo. It never quite leaves his face, even during the direst and darkest of passages, but takes on a curve of bitterness here, a pang of helplessness there, shades of rage, or hunger, or desire. Throughout, the glow of that smile lingers at his cheekbones, illumines his eyes.

It always begins and ends with gratitude, with him. As if it weren’t our honor just to be in his presence, listening to him read. And such stories!

Anyway, I have a lot to learn from him. Not least of which, to remember that we must take nothing for granted. This time, this attention, this space, this place, these people. To express our warmest and most genuine welcome in gratitude, to open the door into our stories with joyful grace.

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Krampus, Baby

Krampus baby, slip a birch switch under the tree, for me
Been an awful bad girl
Krampus baby, so slither down my chimney tonight

Krampus baby, a scourging purge with your little lash, then smash
All the bones in my hand
Krampus baby, come slither down my chimney tonight

Think of all the hell I’ve raised
Think of all the fellas that I plagued and hazed
Steep me in your cauldron deep
And cook me till I’m nice and braised

Krampus honey, a suit of fur would just make me purr, for sure
Been a devil all year
Krampus baby, so slither down my chimney tonight

Krampus cutie, there’s one thing that I really do need, to bleed
In a cauldron of limbs
Krampus cutie, so slither down the chimney tonight

Krampus baby, of predators you are the apex, you vex
And you hex all the time
Krampus baby, so slither down the chimney tonight

Come infest my Krampus nest
With flogs and chains and horns and hooves and all the rest
Krampus, I’m obsessed with you
You’re better than the very best

Krampus baby, forgot to mention one little thing, a ring
Yes, I mean through my nose
Krampus baby, come slither down the chimney tonight
Slither down my chimney tonight
Hurry, tonight

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The Archivist

for Jeremy Brett

He was the archivist, hive artist, building bee of book queens
Cataloguer, stargazer, keeper of the histories
Time-tender, mind-bender, guardian of the garden
(Opus-blossom, tome-bloom, orchid of the quarto moon)
Dictionary sentry, vede mecum warden
Softcover sentinel, steward of the volume
Compendium custodian, defender of the lexicon
Minister of monk scrolls, occult apothecary
Poetry protector and conservator of copy
Encyclopedic overseer, dissertation sentry
Omnibusboy, page of pamphlets, prince of printed leaflets
Codex cad, thesaurus rex, treatise tarot reader
Monarch of the monographs, anarchist of albums
Archivist, hive artist, Atlas of the atlas


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Medusa Mia! Pre-Show That Never Will Be!

Due to OUR change of venue, we are unable to get our hands on a projector screen for this SUPERFUN PRE-SHOW Carlos Hernandez and I put together!

What we’d meant to do was have these images, multiple choices, and “unfun” facts for the PRE-SHOW, and then RE-USE the images DURING the show, pairing with the songs we chose them for.

So, after you watch, just imagine REPLAYING it with the following in mind.


(MEDUSA) 1. OVID’S “MEDUSA”/Song: Cootchie Cootchie, Medusa Baby
(DIDO) 2. Dido’s lament “WHEN I AM LAID IN EARTH”/Song: Dido in Effigy
(MEDEA) 3. EURIPIDES “MEDEA”/Song: Medea’s Dragon
(CIRCE) 4. HOMER’S “CIRCE” / Song: Circe embedded


(ARIEL) 1.Song: Gentle Caliban/Liz Duffy Adams’ play: “BECALMED”
(WITCH) 2. Song: Black Widow’s Waltz/“GOOD NEIGHBORS” (Jessica Wick)
(KITSUNE) 3. Song: Foxgirl Song Cycle 1
(WAR) 4. Julia Rios’s “YET I BREATHE”/Amal El-Mohtar’s”Pieces”/Song: Lady Knight / Pale Lady
(ROOSTER) 5. Carlos Herandanez’s “In Lieu of the Stories My Santera Abuela Should Have Told Me Herself, This Poem”
(BANSHEE) 6. Song: Maggot the Banshee
(NAGINI) 7. “NAGINI’S NIGHT SONG” (by Shveta Thakrar) / Song: Barrow Brine embedded
(LYSISTRATA) 8. “LYSISTRATA” SCENE/Song/Parade: Lysistrata, Strut Your Stuff

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Call & Response, by Fran Wilde & C.S.E. Cooney

A Facebook Private Message Collaboration! Sort of by accident. Meteoric brightness in this gray.


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Jack and Jill and the Old Silver Moon

dedicated to Anthony John Woo
inspired by Pop Goes the Weasel: The Secret Meaning of Nursery Rhymes by Albert Jack

Jack, said his sister
I’m thirsty and sore
Let’s seek out the well of the moon
His water so silver
Runs endless and sweet
A drop or I’ll perish soon

Jill, said her brother
It’s thieves we will be
The two of us rascals and lords
We’ll fly to the moon
And we’ll drink of his well
And steal all the gems of his horde

The moon has a cannon
As white as an egg
It blisters and blusters and roars
It blunders and thunders
And CRACK! goes your pate
And down falls your head ever more

Now Jill is a beggar
And Jack is an urchin
And long burn the stars in the night
They watch the youths climb
Through the murk and the grime
To steal them a pail full of light

Boom! goes the moon
And the white cannon fires
And thus a new crater is born
The bucket lies broken
The children the same
With none but the stars left to mourn

Jack, said his sister
We’ve had an adventure
Jill, said her brother, it’s true
And if I must die
Well, I’ll die in the sky
And at least at the end, it’s with you

The moon, he was moved
Like a god on his throne
And so, like a god, he was kind
The dust of their tongues
Did he lay with a kiss
And they turned all to silver so fine

Now Jill is the queen
Of the well of the moon
And Jack is the king of the egg
It’s on them to mete out
their mercy or murder
To children too hungry to beg

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AUCTIONS FOR ACTION! My Contribution! Benefits ACLU!

9781618730978_bigMy friend Nicole Kornher-Stace, author of ARCHIVIST WASP, created this AUCTIONS FOR ACTION page.


We’re here to auction items (art, books, handcrafted items, baked goods, whatever!) to benefit the ACLU. Ongoing as long as there’s interest!

Here’s how it works:


1.) List each item in a separate post under the “Sell Something” tab.

2.) Set a starting bid and end time, and whether you are covering shipping cost or the buyer will need to pay for it.

3.) When your auction is over, post that it has ended and contact your buyer.

4.) The buyer will provide a shipping address and proof of donation to the ACLU in the amount of the winning bid.

Bone_Swans_mockup_ALT-15.) If you are not covering shipping costs, you will need to get them Paypaled to you by the winning bidder.

6.) Ship your item as agreed upon with the buyer.


1.) Bid on items in their own threads. Note what time your auction is ending.

2.) If you win, provide your shipping address to the seller.

3.) Make a donation to the ACLU ( in the amount of your winning bid and send the seller proof of your donation.

4.) If shipping costs are not covered by the seller, you will need to pay them to the seller separately.


heap-of-cseI myself have listed two items:



1. World Fantasy Award-winning story collection, BONE SWANS.
2. Papaveria-published poetry collection: HOW TO FLIRT IN FAERIELAND AND OTHER WILD RHYMES (includes Rhysling Award-winning “The Sea King’s Second Bride.”
3. JACK O’ THE HILLS, one of the “Wonder Tales” imprints by Papaveria.
4. THE YEAR’S BEST SCIENCE FICTION AND FANTASY 2016, edited by Rich Horton, including C. S. E. Cooney’s novella “THE TWO PAUPERS

Shipping included. Bid ends December 15th, Midnight EST!
brimming-with-brimstoneBRIMMING WITH BRIMSTONE

1. Brimstone Rhine CD, including two EPs “Alecto! Alecto!” and “The Headless Bride.”
2. Brimstone Rhine album print, signed by Brimstone Rhine (AKA C. S. E. Cooney)
3. LIMITED EDITION PRINT of forthcoming backer’s album CORBEAU BLANC, CORBEAU NOIR. Art by “The Dread” Patty Templeton, signed by artist and Brimstone Rhine (AKA C. S. E. Cooney

Shipping included. Bidding ends December 15th at midnight, EST.

AGAIN, here’s the whole AUCTIONS FOR ACTION PAGE to see all the other WONDERFUL THINGS you can bid on!

Thank you so much,

C. S. E. Cooney



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Dismembered But Still Singing

dismembered but still singing
the musician floats down sorrow river

even now
they retain their sense of glamour

maybe it’s the sequins, the high-and-lowlights
or reverb from a lav mic clipped to their rhinestone collar
(and this, all this
gore-caked now, glitterlessly blasé
from the surgical frenzy of that last great show)

the musician sings Ogden Nashish rhymes
to the melody of a dusty velvet aria
they are

about time signature, tradition
key change, coming in sharp, loss of lyrics
addled eggs

adulatory flowers
released in startled arcs
from the palms of a perspiring audience, like
a magician’s emaciated doves

mouth open, water lapping
they sing,

not even a laryngectomee’s wheeze through the stoma
not even that

but there is lipstick, at least
on that bloodless face

stylishly smeared


C. S. E. Cooney

December 6th, 2016

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