From The Jazz Age

The man in the high castle

In his elegant turret attic, Tycho Brahe turns the page, turns it back, then back again. No matter how closely he peers at the drawings, or how intently he attempts to recreate in his mind’s eye every detail of what he has seen, he knows deep down that he will never be sure if it was a corn or reed bunting, an ortolan or a yellowhammer that came tapping at his window in the early dawn. Sullenly at last he closes the book, returns it to its place on the shelf between Chrysostom’s bestiary and his first edition of Kepler’s Mysterium Cosmographicum.



Aidan Semmens’s fourth poetry collection, Life Has Become More Cheerful, appeared in 2017 from Shearsman Books, which will publish his fifth in 2020. He also edits the online magazine Molly Bloom.