• Vol. 07
  • Chapter 11
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Harsh New Realities

I bottle things up,
specimens in mason jars,
to observe when Earth
becomes a super-heated gas.

How am I still here?
Left on an interstellar survey shuttle.
Knew there wasn't much more time,
kept things simple—

brought creatures with basic anatomy—
those with segmented carapaces
might survive harsh new realities.
I've been told I have a thick skin—

that's only a half-truth.
My father's criticisms haunt me,
they followed me here
to the far reaches of the quadrant.

A daughter: why couldn't I have a son?!
A vegetarian: where's the protein?!
At least he believed in Science.
I smile—

know he'd be appalled;
atoms recombine as humanoid
to morally harangue after death—
tethered to the same old concerns.