Monday, August 08, 2005

Shuttle's safe return

Maybe it's because I have a friend who is slipping away that life seems to tenuous.

Whatever the reason, I find myself preoccupied with the shuttle Discovery and getting it back to earth safely. I mean, all those bitty pieces of fabric they're obsessing over have me worried. The fact that they scrubbed the scheduled landing yesterday is unnerving. The people in charge seem unnerved, despite their jaunty Discovery page at NASA's web site. That's REALLY unnerving. The NY Times printed an article yesterday on why some parents, instead of preparing to watch the landing with their kids are shielding their kids from watching. As NYT said, "a generation of Americans that has lived through two shuttle disasters is growing edgy."

I titled this thread the way I did because I feel like keeping fingers crossed, tossing salt over my shoulder, whatever will help. Am I obsessing here, or displacing? Displacing, I think. It's hard to wake up every day and wonder if.

As a rocket kid, I can't help but think about my friend and those astronauts up there, until we know one way or the other. These are the moments when faith definitely helps. In anything.


  1. I agree it's good to get them back safe - but I can't help disliking the whole space-exploration thing, which I think is extravagantly expensive, (while there is so much poverty), morally problematic (I fear it is aimed mainly at exploiting space as a military advantage), but worst of all -

    - Unpoetic! I want the stars and the Moon and the planets to be mysteries, to be gods and goddesses. I want the moon to be heavenly Luna, Diana, Selene, Artemis, ruler of the tides and the months, bringer of poetic inspiration. Not some dead, dusty satellite with chaps stomping all over it in their size 20 space boots & planting flags & dropping their trash.

    I'm a blooming anachronism, ain't I?

  2. May Phoebus Apollo, Asklepios and Hygea bless your friend!

  3. For some reason, I have no problem holding both the vision of planets, stars and moons as physical objects of space exploration (or at least telescopic exploration) and the highly poetic idea that they may also exert heavenly influences.

    And I even know an astronomer who is also into astrology, though for professional reasons, I won't divulge her name.

    Doesn't seem to me that a paradox is unpoetic. Nor do I think of planets -- including the one we're standing on -- as dead.

    Just a thought! I like your insistence on the poetic associatians with the heavens.