Red Mars

red mars


Such a cliché to say

“This book changed my life!”

But RED MARS really did.

I’d never seen my Mars in print before;

No author had ever reached into my chest

And wrapped their fingers around my heart

Like KSR did from chapter one.

It’s my Pride and Prejudice;

My Moby Dick; my Old Man And The Sea,

As important to me as War and Peace

Is to millions. After all these years

The First Hundred are as real and as dear to me

As any characters created by Dickens or Shakespeare.

Sneering Frank Chalmers, as dark and troubled

As King Lear; John Boone every bit as noble

As any sword-swinging Middle Earth hero;

Furiously-curious gene genie Sax, a modern Moreau;

And lonely Ann Clayborne, as heart-breaking a heroine

As Cosette, Katniss or Karenina.

Every time I read it the real world fades away.

The grey sky above me turns a caramel hue,

Every scrunching leaf and dew-beaded blade of grass vanishes,

Replaced by rust red boulders, rocks and stones

Until yet again I’m standing all alone

On Mars,

On Mars,

On Mars.


© Stuart Atkinson 2018

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