A. Walker Scott

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Sonnet I

by A. Walker Scott

© 2007

(This work first appeared in Asimov's Science Fiction March 2012.)

How cold is space, that dark and hollow night

Which holds in velvet hand the jewels of God.

At Man she laughs, not joyous, but in spite,

For man, too small, has strayed where none had trod,

And homes not meant for man's abode has claimed

On Mars' red earth, in frozen land of ice and storm;

In Lunar waste on cratered plain, sea-named;

And flying fast round worlds of gaseous form;

Or launching forth in deepest night to stars

Unnamed, unknown, unclaimed and farther flung.

But Man, his pride, his lust, it knows no bars,

And going on he comes to skies unsung.

     The Night, she calls, and men, they come pell-mell,

     But what the worlds they'll find: Delight or Hell?

Sonnet II

by A. Walker Scott


In chlorine sky dawns sun of golden hue,

Set moons of marbled face, and shine the stars

From off a different map. But domed, we view

The crystal homes of those expelled by wars

Who bend a world not theirs to serve their will.

A fragile hope. A desperate plan. A grasp

For freedom, faith, renewal, peace — to fill

Their cup and start again, to strive and clasp

The future, wrestle fate and win a dream

For children yet unborn. That music yet

May grace the morn and song entwine with gleam

Of star. For this they labor, and they set

     Their hope. Can rise the dream to soar and give

     A race a second chance to learn to live?

Sonnet III

by A. Walker Scott

© 2010

Through endless night the frozen travelers sleep

To venture farther than their lives can last,

The first from grasp of native world to leap

And reach for stars that once were guide to mast,

With ship that holds within its womb the seeds

Of life to start anew 'neath skies unseen

By all the generations past, to deeds

Unmatched to play the host as waste with green

Is spread. But tech moves fast while ship moves slow,

And in the vast a single ship is lost

In space and time, and as they inch t'ward glow

Of goal, new ships have raced and void have crossed

     And welcome ancient parents to the world

Their children built while all their dreams were furled.

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