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Friday, May 3, 2013

Mars Deserves Better.

It was a leap to the heavens, followed by the inevitable, fatal crash back to reality.  There was a Tweet, a chance at immortality in 140 characters or less, it had been re-tweeted by someone, so there is no way to know how long it had been bouncing around in the "tweet-o-sphere" (OK, there probably is a way, but it would require more effort than someone who has just had his dreams smashed against the jagged, unforgiving rocks of reality should be asked to give).

"Send your name and message to Mars" it said, "Wow, that would be so cool, my name and my message on  Mars.  It took seconds to click on that link.  It was from the University of Colorado, at Boulder, and they are participating in the "Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution Mission" MAVEN for short, of course.  It really is quite a name, and a catchy acronym makes anything more tempting.  An opportunity to send a message and your name to Mars doesn't come up often.  (Let me know if I am wrong about that, please, maybe Mars has so many names and messages it looks like a subway wall, covered in graffiti).

Now for the bad bit, it has to be a haiku.  Honestly, Martians like haiku that much?  Poetry as a form of communication, it seems a little doubtful, but a form of poetry that is potentially 1400 years old, and has so many rules and nuances as to be almost impossible, and doesn't even rhyme, well that just seems silly.  Can Martians really appreciate the imagery that a person needs to cram into 17 syllables.  Well, one can only hope the University of Colorado at Boulder knows what they are asking.

Spending quite a while crafting and editing and re-writing, and just in general nuancing the heck right out of a haiku, at last there was a perfect poem.  Of course, it had to be about Mars, what would Martians know of a;

bird walking on air
with delicate white above
green life waits below

Or anything like that.  It was written and submitted, and then all that needed to be done was wait for the love and gratitude of Martians everywhere, as they sobbed quietly at the beauty of a Martian haiku masterpiece.  "Submit" and wait, and wait, and then go get some coffee, and wait some more.

WHAT?  It didn't upload?!!  Robbery, and now it disappeared!  And, trust this, it was so wonderful it can never be recreated.  Ah, the poor Martians will never know what they missed.

Here is the link if you want to try, but don't get your hopes up.
http://lasp.colorado.edu/maven/goingtomars/