Sunday, May 07, 2006

Aliens, germs and irrational fears

Boy, the immigration thing has not calmed down, and now I'm reading on that we may also have to close our U.S. borders in the near future because of the bird flu. NBC News called the immigration issue a crisis and it is anticipated that the bird flu will become a problem of pandemic proportions. Well, that and a quick viewing of the film "Hostel" is enough to convince me. Seal up those borders! Keep the aliens out! Keep the germs out! Don't travel! Just keep me in my safe little cocoon!

Oh, but wait. I don't really believe that. In fact, I wrote about all of this several years ago. It came to me in a dream (I'm not joking - it was a rockin' dream). My poem was somewhat appreciated when I first unveiled it, but it wasn't something people really thought twice about - a sci-fi poem, geek stuff, so what? Well, maybe the themes that were touched on might resonate a bit more now? You be the judge. Here it is, once again:

The Aliens

The aliens came in
as a vapor.
They were ancient beings,
very old,
some say immortal,
but others still insist
they never existed at all.
This is because
they are so small.
They floated through the universe,
hitching rides on comet tails
to pick up speed, if necessary.
Little viral microbes,
too miniscule
for most living things to notice.
They traveled long and far,
adapting themselves
to each new environment.
And this is how
they came to be

Some of them were
in our upper atmosphere,
where they lingered for a long, long time.
A few would come down,
with rains and wind,
but they could easily find each other.
Their perception connection
was very strong.
Some would say it was
others would, again, refuse to believe it.
When enough of them gathered
within our skies,
they decided to learn about us,
and this is when
the problem began.
For we humans couldn’t see
the aliens,
even though we breathed them
into our bodies,
just like we might breathe in
any random vapor.

No one understood
what caused
the plague.
Panic ensued.
Pharmaceutical companies
worked through time
to create drugs

to attack the symptoms.
Soon, many efficient ones
were available
to anyone with money
to pay for them.
The injections were very popular.
They kept humans looking young
and healthy.
Folks were able to
remain active.
the aliens were able to
mutate at will.
They were wise and strong,
thus able to live in almost any environment,
even one of attack.
So with each injection,
a new set of symptoms
kept cropping up.
Humans went mad
for the next set of injections,
anything to keep the alien symptoms
They would inject and inject,
until there were no satisfactory injections left,
and the ailing humans would
completely ravaged by their weak bodies.

But there was one girl
who felt differently.
On the evening when she inhaled
the aliens,
she thought she heard them speak
to her
in her sleep.
She heard them say they were there
to help her.
When she went to the government-mandated doctor
her poverty allowed,
with the first sign of symptoms,
she refused the injection.
The doctor insisted,
“The virus must be attacked, killed!”
She said that it couldn’t be killed
and perhaps if it weren’t attacked,
then it wouldn’t counterattack
so fiercely.
The doctor called her insane.

She left and confined herself to a room.
News channels heard of
her theory and attempted to
interview her and debate the issue.

Her state of illness was carefully watched
around the world.
She began with digestive sickness
and dehydration.
She patiently drank water
with trembling lips.
Then the aliens challenged her
circulatory system and she
became very cold.
Her arteries, veins, capillaries
became filled with dead
white blood cells,
which seeped out of her skin
and crystallized into a beautiful, yellow
that would build, layer upon layer,
like amber lace made of glass.
She would take warm water
and painfully dissolve the shell,
slowly, every hour, without rest.
Some humans died during this stage,
falling asleep and becoming petrified
in a cast of topaz.
The aliens would multiply fiercely
in the dead body
and then escape through the nose or mouth
they had entered,
and then find new hosts.
But the girl remained strong.
She allowed the aliens
to seize each organ,
find its weakness,
and then move on to the next.
She coughed, moaned and cried out,
even though her voice gave.
The ordeal took her
six months,
after which she emerged

Her body became their home.
The aliens had made her flesh
She was now immune
to what killed so many weaker souls.

She began to find others
who had accepted the aliens
into their bodies.
They all opened a center
where the sick could come
and have help in becoming immune.
The pharmaceutical companies
and the Medical Association
attempted to shut down the center,
but found they could not
when it was proven that no one

dispensed drugs
or technical medical advice.
through time,
the aliens killed off all who attacked them
and made those who didn’t
closer to being