THE NTH ITERATION OF THE DIGITAL PROPHET BY DAVID SANDNER

Untitled by Robert Rauschenberg (1950 -1960) via Chicago Art Institute

We live in an era of fragmented light

held in the hand

or splintered in the mind.

Our eyes shine like numbers

cascading across the empty sky.

Our dreams are algorithms

arising from the deep sea of chance.

What is left to us but the unfortunate sense

of what we lost when we erased our hard drives,

the authorities pounding on the doors of our safe rooms?

What GPS can map our souls’ direction home?

What blood can redeem

our memories wiped,

as we download into our avatars forever,

icons spinning endlessly,

bereft since the inception date

of this, our virtual Eden?


David is a writer and scholar of fantastika and the weird. David is a member of SFWA and the HWA. David’s recent novelette, Mingus Fingers (Fairwood), co-written with Jacob Weisman of Tachyon Publications, is a fantasy about Jazz and magic that got strong reviews from F&SF (“one of those rare stories that got everything right”) and Locus Online (“a wonderful accomplishment”).  David has had stories and poems in Asimov’s, Weird Tales, Realms of Fantasy, and many other magazines, and anthologies including The HWA Poetry Showcase, Mike Ashley’s Mammoth Book of Sorcerers’, Ellen Datlow’s Tails of Wonder and Imagination, W.P. Kinsella’s Baseball Fantastic, and many others.  

Recent scholarship includes “Rambles in the Fantastic: Digital Mapping Mary Shelley’s Last Man” from Space(s) of the Fantastic: A 21st Century Manifesto (Routledge, 2020), the creation of an academic database of works influenced by Frankenstein, The Frankenstein Meme, see frankensteinmeme.com, curating an Exhibit called Zines to the Future!, exploring the history of sf zines back to 1930s, developed with a grant from California Humanities, and an edited collection, Philip K. Dick: Essays of the Here and Now (2020), which Fortean Times called “an important book about an important writer.” David chaired a recent Philip K. Dick Conference, and has written other scholarly books and numerous essays on genre.

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