KYSO Flash
Knock-Your-Socks-Off Art and Literature
Issue 7: Spring 2017
Haibun: 173 words

Fish Bowl

by Stella Pierides

The simulation hypothesis is not new. The idea that we are being held inside a complete, self-sustaining simulated biosphere, observed, and made to believe it is real has precedents in earlier times. Tweaking the basic idea here and there, we can trace it to Plato’s Allegory of the Cave: chained prisoners presented with mere shadows of the real world take them to be the real thing and refuse to believe otherwise. Plato sowed the seed of doubt in the world of experience. Can we ever go beyond the chains of our existence and into the light of the sun? And at what price? Is our existence woven with elements of both, sun and shadows, reason and fantasy, fact and fiction?

Millennia later, we are still wondering. But here, now, with the Church tower bell ringing the hours, sunlight throwing the olives on the table into relief, and grilled sardines scenting the air, the question whether this is the real world can wait.

silver leaves—
the ebb and flow
of time


Stella Pierides
Issue 7, Spring 2017

is a writer and poet born in Athens, Greece, who now divides her time between Neusaess, Germany, and London, UK. In her heart, she lives somewhere on the Aegean coast. She is married and has two adult daughters. Stella trained as a psychotherapist and worked for many years in London. Currently, she serves on the Board of Directors of The Haiku Foundation (THF) and manages the THF “Per Diem: Daily Haiku” feature.

Stella’s work has been published in numerous print and online journals and anthologies. She has co-edited and contributed to Even Paranoids Have Enemies: New Perspectives on Paranoia and Persecution (Routledge, 1998) and Beyond Madness (JKP, 2002). Recent books: Of This World, haibun (Red Moon Press, 2016); The Heart and Its Reasons, short stories (Fruit Dove Press, 2014); Feeding the Doves, short stories and haibun (Fruit Dove Press, 2013); and In the Garden of Absence, micro-poetry and haiku (Fruit Dove Press, 2012), for which she received a Haiku Society of America Merit Book Award 2013, for books published in 2012.

Author’s website:

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