Strawberry Milkshake by Lauren McBride


Take Joe, for instance.

Never did give a damn

about exercise,

but then, that’s why

they chose him,

pre-fattened for the pot –

a huge, smelly thing                               

at city central, all cities

planet-wide now

we hear.


We don’t go out

anymore. That’s when

they take you –

snouts snuffling

like grotesque elephant trunks

dangling down

from their spacecrafts,         

slithering along streets,

sniffing like cadaver dogs,

encoiling the unlucky,

and crushing them,


to boil in the pot –

dissolving, liquefying,

then cooling

to get sucked up

like a strawberry milkshake.


Can’t help but

imagine what lives

at the business end

of those stinking,

sucking snouts.

Terrified I might

eventually “see” one

from the inside.


(This poem first appeared in Tales of the Talisman, vol. 10, issue 2, winter 2014.)

Lauren McBride finds inspiration in faith, family, nature, science and membership in the Science Fiction & Fantasy Poetry Association (SFPA). Nominated for the Best of the Net, Rhysling and Dwarf Stars Awards, her poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in dozens of publications including Asimov’s, Abyss & Apex and Dreams & Nightmares. She enjoys swimming, gardening, baking, reading, writing and knitting scarves for troops.


Published 8/15/19