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It Snows on Camelot

It Snows on Camelot
by J. A. Grier

In each flake's structure is a map, a code, a memory of heaven, a place of clouds and lightness. The field beneath is a dream of blood and rust, angled spears, the open-eyed dead. The crystals land as small blooms of ice water, as offerings upon the frozen, spiky grass. This blanket covers more than shame, more than failure - hidden in the corroded blades of chivalry is an idea without any human warmth, a box of blame. Spring is harsh with wind and disintegrating sun. Snow and metal drain away into the ground. The flowers unfold in white and red - roses with warnings in their unforgiving thorns.

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J. A. Grier is a speculative fiction writer, poet, planetary scientist, and astronomy educator.  Dr. Grier's poems and stories have appeared in Space and Time, Niteblade, Liquid Imagination, and the anthologies Suffer the Little Children and Life In Me Like Grass On Fire.  Other credits include a textbook entitled The Inner Planets and a host of tweets, occasionally profound but usually otherwise, under @grierja on Twitter.  Works in progress include a collection of creepy childhood horror poems and a space opera novel trilogy.  Dr. Grier contemplates various astronomy facts and speculative fictions at

What advice do you have for other fantasy writers? 

I think of the poem I'm working on as wet clay - I get my hands dirty, try new things, and enjoy myself.  I keep shaping and sculpting until I love the thing I'm holding.  As poets we need to set our minds free, and create what is inspiring for us and not what we think someone else wants.  Fantasy seems to bloom when the mind is willing to surrender the ordinary and go someplace totally new, unexpected, full of energy, and maybe a little uncomfortable.