Here you’ll find merch, Issue #5 story excerpts, interviews, the issue’s Spotify playlist, & links to reviews. So take a look, and make sure you haven’t missed anything!
The light of my candle is dimming, the tallow becoming low, but this must be recorded. There is an ivory trinket sitting here before me on the windowsill. It is precious to me. How it made its way to me is of no import, but the fact that it did at all is what drove me to tell this tale. I once bore arms in our war of independence and faced redcoats and fear itself, but this?
This is something else.
There’s a monster masquerading as a man in Manman’s bedroom. Sometimes I hear Manman speaking to him, their hushed voices in the night. She’s warned me not to enter her bedroom. Up until now, I’ve obeyed her. It wasn’t always her room. A year ago it belonged to the master of this, the Andre Plantation: Mr. Louis DeVille and his pinch-faced wife.
But they’re dead. Dead by my Manman’s hands. Dead by the hands of the people that they had once “owned.”
what? I couldn’t judge. We all made fashion blunders the first time.
She stood before me: a young woman with long, dark hair twisted in braids that hung down to her waist wearing a white dress that covered herself from neck to bare feet. She looked like a woman from a squared, yellowed photograph, the kind with a white band around it, with wrinkles from age.
Her long white skirts brushed against the quilt I’d kicked off during the night as the heat waves rolled through the shack, her presence smelling of wet, red clay after a thunderstorm.
She was my comforter, and in some ways…my accuser.
The moon was a pale, golden disc in a lavender sky. Sakina, in a brilliant blue caftan that brought out the colour in her skin and eyes, strummed her kora a few times to check the tuning. At her ear, an ancestor whispered, “He is quite brazen to be out here when the moon is full…or powerful enough to resist it.”
Sakina looked over at the tall, thin man sinking into one of the dougou-tigui’s fine silk cushions. Asif the alim looked as if a stiff breeze would knock him over, the skin stretched tight over his bones. Asma had called him a ghoul and Sakina agreed. He noticed her stare, smiled, and said, “Of all the djeli I have met in my travels, you are by far the most captivating.”
Special Essay: “Black Empire: George Schuyler, Black Radicalism and Dieselpunk” by Phenderson Djèlí Clark
Indie Spotlight Interview – Colby R. Rice: This issue’s spotlight feature interview is with Colby R. Rice. A segment of THE GIVEN from her GHOSTS OF KOA duology can be found in this issue of FIYAH…
Cover Artist – Trevor Fraley: Trevor Fraley is the cover artist for FIYAH #5! We interviewed him about his style, his process, and the artwork he did for us.
Quick Sip Reviews: In this case, the theme seems to aim the issue toward historical fantasy and more contemporary looks back at history and tradition. Given the history of blackness in America and beyond, it’s probably no surprise that the stories all have an edge of violence to them…