Alien

Botticelli's Birth of Venus
Botticelli's Birth of Venus

The sea beneath your minimal spacecraft turns adamant, grows scales like a lizard. A superhero saves you from a swarm of devious roses, cape flapping melodramatically, his last client still clinging to his side. A green-skinned native emerges from the shelter of the trees, offering to wrap you in the flag of her country. This is clearly a very dangerous planet for a would-be goddess. Everyone wants to enlist you in their battles, & I have a suspicion they won’t take love for an answer.

My response to the Venus Poetry Project, an experiment in anonymous, open-content poetry composition. (Thanks to Dana for the link.) Since I posted this three days ago, someone has already reworked it, with interesting results:

The sea
beneath your minimal
spacecraft turns adamant, grows
scales like a lizard. A superhero
saves you
from a swarm of devious roses,
cape flapping melodramatically,
his last lost cause
still clinging to his side.
A green-skinned native emerges
from the shelter of trees, offering
to wrap you in the flag
of her country. Dangerous planet
for a would-be goddess. Everyone wants
to enlist you in their battles.
I suspect they won’t take love
for an answer.

(To make your own changes to the poem, go here.)

Dave Bonta (bio) crowd-sources his problems by following his gut, which he shares with 100 trillion of his closest microbial friends — a close-knit, symbiotic community comprising several thousand species of bacteria, fungi, and protozoa. In a similarly collaborative fashion, all of Dave’s writing is available for reuse and creative remix under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License. For attribution in printed material, his name (Dave Bonta) will suffice, but for web use, please link back to the original. Contact him for permission to waive the “share alike” provision (e.g. for use in a conventionally copyrighted work).

3 Replies to “Alien”

  1. Thanks! I must say I like the changes made by the first anonymous editor, too (though later changes seem to me to lose the rhythm and spoil the ending a bit). It’s cool the way the project site includes all previous drafts on the same page as the current draft, unlike the wiki software that Wikipedia uses.

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