How To Get Back Home From Outer Space #N

Space Wreck
Space Wreck by Bob Lazell

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104b.

Well, here we are, my friend, and welcome to Volume Two.
Not the book I promised, alas, but this will have to do.
I hope the climb was not too taxing, hope it’s clement weather –
It’s best of all at suns-set, when all four go down together.
If you’ll excuse an in-joke, then this very situation
Is a little like that final message God left his creation.

I’m afraid I’ve got some very bad news,
But maybe you’ve guessed – seen through my ruse:
We’re dying, you and I.  Maybe you guessed.
Here ends our bloody pointless noble quest.
Those knobbly leaves that saved us – well, they saved us for a while;
It seems they hold a toxin that has gathered in our bile.

Look, I know, I could go back and let you know
With footnotes, perhaps. But then, where would you go ?
So I’ve lied to you instead.
A sin of omission, I guess, but you still end dead.
But if I had, you’d have starved all the quicker –
This way, I gave you a hope, a flicker,
One which I shared at the time.
Now I know better, and fully accept my crime
To not let on that we are cursed;
Of all the choices, this one seems least worst.

Either way, we’re never going home.
But hey, how many can get to roam
Across this glorious galaxy,
Across such worlds and moons as we ?
And so much life !  Such gorgeous beings –
It has been fun, all our sight-seeings.
For us, the galaxy displays her best –
And if we’re cursed, then surely too we’re blessed !

So, the journal once more takes its place
To aid the next poor refugee in space,
So terrified and all alone,
A long long way from home.
And they shall read this letter, too –
So after all my words, please add a few words of your own.
Perhaps there are some here already, under mine,
From voyagers before your time, who spared a thought to share a line
In many voices: calm, betrayed or manic.
To all of you now facing death, I urge you with my final breath:

Don’t panic…

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