11th Hour (Nikoline Kaiser)

 Dearly beloved

we are gathered here today

in honor and remembrance of

a most beloved figure

an author of unknown renown 

taken from us too soon

when the 11th rejection of

her magnum opus

finally killed her

blame her not 

11, you might think

a number light, all things considered

many an aspiring artist have surely suffered worse

with great grief, sure

but with perseverance, overcoming their hardships

what was the final drop, you might ask

in this cup of rejections, overflowing

the answer is a single e-mail

when the editor asked

what she might be willing to do 

to get published 

yes, an e-mail ended only with 


She will be missed.


Nikoline Kaiser is the author of several poems and short stories, including “ode to an asexual” published with Strange Horizons and “The Dawn Was Gray” with Underland Arcana. Her work focuses on family, feminism and queer themes. She lives in Denmark and has a Master’s degree in Comparative Literature from Aarhus University 

When not writing, she works on a project communicating knowledge about women authors around the world. 


image: MM Kaufman