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"World News Tonight ______, 2008"

Fearless, a warrior
smiles; breaching
the Gates of Heaven.

Preparing a feast,
a woman moves through the rooms
of an empty house.

Branches dip and sway,
leaves tremble in the breeze,
green tree sings — alone.

Above the rivers
of War, we balance on a
feather called Fate.

Malaysian-American writer Shymala Dason (on the Internet at has always been interested in the reflections of social forces — war, immigration, community, family — in the intimate, human, and sometimes magical responses they produce. Her non-fiction and fiction, including magic realism, have appeared in The Massachusetts Review, an Asian American Writers' Workshop anthology, Marion Zimmer Bradley's Fantasy Magazine, and elsewhere. She is a mathematician by training, a Bennington College alumna, and a former NASA consultant. She has recently completed a novel.