We Will Never Leave Earth

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We will never leave Earth.

Battlestar Galactica, is a lie.

Star Trek, is a lie.

Alien, is a lie.

We will never leave Earth.

We will never leave Earth because we will spend the time we have left and the one chance we have to leave Earth bickering over who did what to who.

We will never leave Earth because instead of building spaceships, we decided to build walls and razor wire and prisons and bombs instead.

We will never leave Earth because we aren’t building space elevators and warp drives and new kinds of space suits and lasers – just in case we ever meet anyone as petty and mean as ourselves out there.

We will never leave Earth because we’re too busy building tanks to fight over the last barrels of oil and planes to drop the bombs we made on the people who disagree with us over the specifics of the story about where we all come from.

We will never leave Earth, even though all our stories agree, that heaven is above us.

We will never leave Earth. Even though Stephen Hawking says we’ve only got 200 years left. The last 2000 don’t give us much hope.

We will never leave Earth because so many of us have agreed that passing laws about what someone else does with their genitals is more important, than leaving the Earth.

We will never leave Earth and we will sink and drown on this ship while we fight over the deck chairs.

We will never leave Earth.

The Last Starfighter, is a lie.

Babylon 5, is a lie.

Star Wars, is a lie.

Iain M. Banks, is a lie.

We will, never, leave Earth.

We will never leave Earth and we will never be anything more than a strange thought the universe had, a moment in which it went, “Heh, wouldn’t that be crazy. Na.”

We will never leave Earth because the world will erupt in fire and ice while we’re still debating whether or not fire and ice actually exist. We will still be arguing over whether we’re burning or freezing to death when we die.

We will never leave Earth and the few robots we’ve sent out in our place will be our only fingerprints on the firmament, the only proof that a grabbing, desperate hand shot out of our coffin, before it sunk beneath the soil.

We will never leave the Earth and meet Aries, Taurus, Gemini, Cancer, Leo, Virgo, Libra, Scorpio, Sagittarius, Capricorn, Aquarius, or Pisces.

We will never touch Gemini’s face and hear her say, “You look just like me. You look just like me.”

We will never leave Earth because we’re too busy arguing over who you’re allowed to love to bother actually doing the work of love, of leaving the Earth.

We will never leave the Earth because we’re obsessed with the soil we were born on and we never realised that all the dirt that we stand on and all the dirt we’re made of, isn’t dirt. It’s star dust. Our dirt, is their dirt, and we will never ask their dirt for help and so, we will never leave earth.

Carl Sagan, is a lie.

Douglas Adams, is a lie.

Guardians of The Galaxy, is a lie.

Space Quest, is a lie.

We will, never, leave Earth.

Except as dust and ashes and minerals, returned to the sender, to be light, burning, in someone else’s stars.


A Burning Whiteness

I have a gift for you my child.

It is a gift that’s only ever taken.

Never given.

I will wrap it around you like a fire but know this:

Your clothes cannot hide it.

It will always be on your hands.

When they are open – when they are fists.

This gift will bond you to everyone else with the same gift, and you will help each other when things get hard, as we have done for hundreds of years.

Do not cry when life is hard, it will never be harder than our gift allows it to be.

You will never hear the sound of a window closing or a door locking as you cross the street.

You will never walk into a boardroom and have people wonder if you’re only there because of some governmental decree.

Yes, sometimes, you will be in a car, or pulled into an office with other people with the same gift as you, and then you will all be expected to put your real cards on the table.

They will whisper and you will hear how they breathe.

You will be expected to let a mask fall to the floor, and let dark and honest air cool your real skin.

You will have special names for everyone who does not have the same special gift as you.

You will walk into a mall and the people doing the shopping will all look just like you.

You will watch movies and read books and the heroes will all look just like you.

You will join us as we tap away on our screens, using the words, “out of the bush,” and making snide, thinly-veiled jokes that we can quickly point out are jokes.

Your gift allows you to say, “Can’t you take a joke?”

Who could hate a joke?

Who could hate a gift?

You will never be casually told to “move on” from the most painful parts of your past.




Your past will be remembered with gunfire at noon and somber moments of silence and statues.

This gift was your father’s father and his father’s before him and he fought and killed and he took all he could before he died.

To give this gift to me.

To give this gift to you.

He did this for you.

You won’t ever even have to think about what you have or where it comes from.

You will have the luxury of taking things for granted.

Of owning history and in turn, the future.

Of expecting these things to always be there, because they always have.

Of being owed an easy life.

People will talk of change.

You will have to say, “Yes, change is necessary.”

But you will never actually have to change anything.

Not even your mind.

You will never have to use the superiority you might claim or your education to actually experience any kind of empathy for anyone else that doesn’t share your gift.

It’s not all roses.

Maybe you will worry about how you’ll afford the rent in your home.

But you can always call me.

Or rely on the skills I have taught you.

This is the gift I have given you.

You must call out.

It will be too much of a shock if you are seen on the street with old, ragged clothes.

People will write articles and pass pictures of you around.

People will ask you what happened to you and point to you as, “An example of how bad things have really gotten.”

We will hold you up like Jesus.

Children will say, “We saw Jesus at the traffic lights!”

If that upsets you, then protest.

When you do, you will never be considered a pawn of the government, a dumb thing, not even human, with no will of its own or nothing to say, nothing more than a manipulation, a distraction from the real issues of the day, which are so much more comfortable for all of us to discuss. Your gift gives you the right to choose what you want to discuss.

When you do, your protest will never be lumped together with the protest of others who look similar to you, you will never be expected to take responsibility for something done by someone else on the other side of the country who shares only the most basic of common denominators with you.

When you do, you will never have your protest dismissed as disgusting, as if protesting was something to be done politely and quietly, as if you’d done something unthinkable at a tea party you weren’t invited to.




When you protest, those around you will raise their cellphone cameras higher and higher and chant:



And we will cry at the truly noble nature of your sacrifice and your protest, we will cry over you as we would cry over some fallen, noble bird.

We will cry as your white skin is broken like porcelain.




Because this is your gift.

And it is taken.

Never given.