A Monstrous Manifesto

While we’re on the subject of the magnificent and utterly brilliant Catherynne M. Valente, here is a most wonderful poem she wrote to open the Monsters Ball at StrowlerCon last weekend in Boston, USA:

If you are a monster, stand up.
If you are a monster, a trickster, a fiend,
If you’ve built a steam-powered wishing machine
If you have a secret, a dark past, a scheme,
If you kidnap maidens or dabble in dreams
Come stand by me.

If you have been broken, stand up.
If you have been broken, abandoned, alone
If you have been starving, a creature of bone
If you live in a tower, a dungeon, a throne
If you weep for wanting, to be held, to be known,
Come stand by me.

If you are a savage, stand up.
If you are a witch, a dark queen, a black knight,
If you are a mummer, a pixie, a sprite,
If you are a pirate, a tomcat, a wright,
If you swear by the moon and you fight the hard fight,
Come stand by me.

If you are a devil, stand up.
If you are a villain, a madman, a beast,
If you are a strowler, a prowler, a priest,
If you are a dragon come sit at our feast,
For we all have stripes, and we all have horns,
We all have scales, tails, manes, claws and thorns
And here in the dark is where new worlds are born.
Come stand by me.

You can hear Cat reading the poem over at the StrowlerCon livefeed archives (about a minute from the start of that link). The rest of the archives are well worth watching for some amazing performances by a whole bunch of very creative folk. Makes me wish I’d been there.

And yes, I believe I may just have a small writerly crush on Ms Valente. Why ever do you ask?


3 thoughts on “A Monstrous Manifesto

    1. Rest is not ieelndss, and to lie sometimes on the grass under trees on a summers day, listening to the murmur of the water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is by no means a waste of time. ~J. Lubbock

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