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What women do is survive. We live by ones and twos in the chinks of your world-machine.

The creature is back down by his boat, and Ruth is still farther away, clutching herself. Blood is running down her elbow.

“Stop it, Don! They aren’t attacking you!”

“For god’s sake! Don’t be a fool, I can’t help you if you won’t get away from them!”

No reply. Nobody moves. No sound except the drone of a jet passing far above. In the darkening stream below me the three white figures shift uneasily; I get the impression of radar dishes focusing. The word spells itself in my head: aliens.


What do I do, call the President? Capture them single-handed with my peashooter? … I’m alone in the arse end of nowhere with one leg and my brain cuddled in meperidine hydrochloride.

“Prrr-eese,” their machine blurs again. “Wa-wat hep …”

– from “The Women Men Don’t See” by James Tiptree, Jr.

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