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Echoes of a distant crash

Seventeen years past, though my mind forgets so much, it recalls that day.
When we learned the price that could be, for reaching too high, too fast.
The day a country's sky-bound dreams shattered and fragmented,
laying low our convictions and illusions of technical mastery.

I remember those years, while the Cold War still held our hearts in its icy grip.
I recall the dark certainly of my thermonuclear fate to come. Only... when?

As I'd grown up, I'd buried myself in books. Science Fiction was my vice.
I'd dreamed of spaceships and super-science. Technology was my patron deity.
NASA's shuttles were black and white altars that rose on pillars of flame and hope.
Someday, we could leave this blued orb and spread like seeds upon the cosmos,
so that our kind might escape our own follies. Or so a young mind dreamed.

My first notion of disaster was the intercom, on that morning of the fall.
It stopped the class lecture, proclaiming "...looks like thousands of missiles!"
Our collective hearts froze, The Button had obviously been Pushed. Armageddon.
But no, this was a disaster of a different sort, a few moments more made clear.
The phrase out of context, talked of smoke trails from the Challenger's myriad fragments.
My mind, awash with momentary dread, slipped instead into disbelief.

The remainder of that day is a blur to me now. I recall fragments, overshadowed.
I'd been so affected, I felt compelled to write a semi-fictional story of it, (thankfully lost to time)
something I've attempted only a handful of times in this life. A writer I am normally not.
Yet here I find my fingers finessing words to screen again, seventeen years later.

So long ago, so soon?


( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 28th, 2003 01:57 pm (UTC)
For us in the UK, we were 'lucky'. The launch time would have resulted in us getting the first transmisions from after completion of launch just as we got back from school. The childrens news program 'Newsround' was scheduled to show it. It ended up 'breaking' the story of the disaster instead.

Those are some of the few images I have seen on telivison I will never be able to forget.

Some time later, when my family made a trip to Florida to visit disneyworld, I asked to visit the Space Center. There is a black monument, huge to the eyes of a child, listing the names of those who died in the progress of the space program. I'm not entirly sure how long I spent looking at it, but I dont think it was enougth.
Jan. 28th, 2003 06:13 pm (UTC)
Marvelously well written, you underestimate your talents for creativity, friend.
Jan. 29th, 2003 11:22 pm (UTC)
A fan who couldn't get in contact in any other way.
Ever since I read "A Gift of Fire, A Gift of Blood", I've been a fan of it and its sequels. I tried to email the author, and Belfry's webmaster, but both emails were defunked.

I just wanted to say that Revar is one of my favorite characters in the stories I've read, and that because of those fics, I've added bats to the list of furs that I would like to write about in my own stories. Before that, I never would have thought of it. And if Revar is based on a real person, then I hope I meet someone like that myself some day.

And I felt that AGoF,AGoB was one of the most powerful, and in my mind, sensual stories I've read. I'm going to strive to write a story as powerful and as sensual as that, even if it takes forever.

Kaleb Fenoir, Black_Dragon_13@yahoo.com
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )