Fluency of Colors
When you were 3 years old, you moved with your parents to the space station. You don't really remember Earth, except in the abstract and blinking notions of a toddler's brain: grey skies and sadness; green grass and joyfulness; yellow sun and popsicles. You lived for three years in a world made of nature and windows that looked out on the abundance of life outside. For the rest of your life, you've lived in a world made of cold metals and windows that look out on the black emptiness of space. Your one relief from the endlessness of the universe is to gaze at the Earth through the thick glass that protects you. It takes up a lot of your time, fantasizing about the place that has become a distant myth in your own mind. It is your own planet, but you always feel like you're on the outside....
There have been some strange events on the space station lately, events that you don't entirely understand. A strange sound reaches your ears as you are sitting there daydreaming about the beautiful planet below you. It sounds something like the aboriginal drumming that you've seen on the Discovery Channel, a peculiar sound to find in a space station. At first, it doesn't catch your attention much, but as it continues hypnotically, your curiosity is piqued. Through the familiar, dull grey hallways of the space station, you search, getting closer and closer....
The sounds stop when you get really close. Then, they start again, with a different rhythm and different instruments. You peek around a doorframe. Many people are gathered in the space, dancing and swaying and beating on everything within reach to make a beat. The very space station itself has become an instrument in their hands. You recognize faces as you go by, and they take your hands to pull you in. You aren't sure what the occasion is, but that doesn't stop you from becoming completely involved. A strange sense of peace descends over you. You've never danced like this in your life; you've never felt so free of the confines of the metal beast you live in.
You are so swept up in the moment, and it takes such a long time to sink in, that you can't remember later at what point you heard the news. For a long time, there is silence in your mind, as your feet take you places that don't physically exist. You forget that you have a body, that you are a separate being from those around you, or that there was ever a moment other than this. You are in a strange, heavenly state that you had no idea even existed. But slowly, the moment winds down, and your senses make a strong return. You feel like you might cry at any moment, out of a profound happiness or sadness; you feel no effort to distinguish. And the news.... You slowly come to a halt, as everyone else is doing, and take in what you now know about yourself and the world. The knowledge of the latter becomes a crushing weight, and you realize you have tears on your face. You run to the window where you had been daydreaming about the Earth....
Feel, and the Seas Fill
From so high up, and after so many years watching it, you recognize the events below as strange. That beautiful planet, blue in a sea of black, is turning to a wasteland before your eyes. People crowd behind you to witness, their eyes blank with shock. No one needs to hear the last frantic calls in the control room; simply knowing that the Earth is being turned into a lifeless rock is enough. The strangely shaped clouds fill the blue atmosphere, obscuring the oceans and continents. 7/10 -- Eden Hemming Rose (25 May, 2005)