Tina L. Jens is the author of more than 100 short stories published in mass market and small press venues, and the multi-award winning novel The Blues Aint Nothin': Tales of the Lonesome Blues Pub. She served as the editor and publisher of the Twilight Tales small press for ten years. Currently, she produces the Gumbo Fiction Salon reading series and teaches fantasy writing courses at Columbia College Chicago.


Martin Mundt has published one novel, Reanimated Americans, with Creeping Hemlock Press, as well as two collections of short stories, The Dark Underbelly of Hymns, originally published by Delirium Books, and The Crawling Abattoir, originally published by Twilight Tales - both re-printed in 2013 by Dark Arts Books. He also published the novella The Cranston Gibberer with Bad Moon Books. Seven of his short stories have received Honorable Mention in "The Year's Best Fantasy and Horror" anthologies. He may be found in cyberspace at www.martinmundt.com and on Facebook.



One Night at the Villa Dementia

Tina Jens and Martin Mundt


There once was an aardvark demure

He crept through dusky crepuscular

For his task was to visit

Sir Necrotic Despot

And deliver a much-needed cure


He stumbled against the front gate

In his haste to alleviate

But the Old Sir was crawling

And the Old Sir was bawling

Twixt the graveyard and Lake Ululate


It was well-known that stiffs swam in there

Loud corpses denied savoir-faire

They had lost their decorum

Lost graves' homey forum

When the Despot undug them from there


To be meat in his Cannibal's pot

This Fate was the lake-bathers' lot

They swam round and round

To tempt him to drown

But go under he simply would not


The aardvark needed to sneeze

And began to whiffle and wheeze

For the inside of his nose

Where the medicine goes

Could no longer contain it with ease


He frantically waved stubby paws

Necrotic never noticed at all

He was too busy chasing

A Miss butchered in Hastings

And he hoped to de-bladder her gall


The cure would soon tame such cravings

With the nose like a gun behaving

He wibbled and wobbled

And soon he had cobbled

A sneeze like a Bedlamite raving


In that package shot thirty days' doses

A more potent drug nobody knowses

From a nose to a mouth

Sir gulped it down south

And now in the lake he reposes


But Death brought no balm to the man

The stiffs had a cleverer plan

They hacked him and fed him

To the fishes that all swim

And then they went back where they began.