February 2021 Submissions

The Bus by Alexandra Thomas

On the first day’s bus ride,

I found, under the neon exit sign

A perfect hideaway, a loners retreat

To sit and gulp down line after line

Of unthinkable creatures, fantastical worlds

And adventure that would never be mine.

Not long after, to my horror,

A siege was waged which my solitude could not weather.

A siege with hair long and dark as a winter night

And eyes of soft heather,

Looking happy as could be

In my hideaway’s soft leather.

Within a second, my defenses rose,

Her greetings met with a cold stare,

Still her friendly smile gleamed bright,

Like a knight’s sword in the dragon’s lair.

Any treasure, I’d have given freely,

But my company, I was unwilling to share

I held my silence for days,

Determined not to forfeit first.

But eventually my walls began to crack, 

And I found myself beginning to thirst

For company, for knowledge, for the stories she told,

With so many questions, I felt fit to burst. 

The stories she started, 

How did they end?

Had her parents held ground against her,

Or, like me, did they give in and bend?

What ever happened to all the toys, 

That to her sister she’d had to lend?

Slowly, slowly, I crept from my shell,

First with a giggle, quiet but true.

Then, my books began to lower,

Hardcover shields long past their due.

Soon, my heart grew soft, my eyes warm, 

And enjoyment replaced my initial rue.




Untitled by Don Wong

Stan745X reporting from Starship 2277C04.
In my attempt to time travel back to 1940's Earth, I have overshot the Earth's orbit and have landed on Mars.
I am alive and have survived with no injuries.
Mars, untouched.  Before man explored here in the 2090's and colonized the planet.  Yes, impossible to breath the air.  Yes, temperatures are very cold at night.  Barren as far as the eye can see.
Is this what the early explorers felt like?  Christopher Columbus, Lewis & Clark?
It won't be for another 150 years before the first manned ship arrives in Mars, though many unmanned probes have explored this area.
The Red Planet.  Yes, I can see whey they call it this.  And why so many of the first explorers were nervous to come here.  Though Mars has captured the imagination of so many humans.  All those sci-fi movies and tv shows about Martians.  How come no imagination about Mercury or other planets?  No, only Martians.
The Red Planet.  No life on here, unlike Earth where life existing before humans.
So natural resources are rock and sand.  The early settlers had to use these resources to make dwellings or at least supplement them.
The day / night cycle is so different than that of Earth.  A sol (full day) is 72 hours.  And a year is made up of 200 sols.  So hard for a human to get use to this cycle, both daily and yearly.

So in my attempt to fulfill my mission, I will need to recalculate the flight path to set to Earth.  Probably not to difficult, though let me enjoy this untouched view of Mars for just a few months longer.