Sunday 25 November 2012

The Creeping Terror of Mars...

It's not there to be seen at the moment, it's crimson brilliance hidden away until it next approaches opposition in a year or so's time. Jupiter entertains all night, Venus glitters in the frozen mornings and soon Saturn will be shaking off his duvet just before the dawn.

But not planet Mars, not for now.

And in some ways, this suits me fine.

To see Mars, late at night, in silence, on your own, is to be reminded of the tentacled terrors that we know DON'T, but REALLY DO, wait for their chance to cross the gulf of space between us and devour our living blood. I go inside after observing Mars, and every hanging coat, every shadow, every shadow cast by a streetlight, becomes an animate creature of terrifying, horrifying, scareifying Martian origin waiting to put a clawed finger on your shoulder the moment your eyes close.

You wake in Sleep Paralysis, and just beyond your frozen visual periphary, an upright bipedal grey martian prepares his probes and samplers for journeys into unmentionable parts. They control the horizontal, they control the vertical. They control the speed with which they open up your stomach and eat your intestines while you watch.

Observing with a telescope at 2am, as I have done, is worse. The green flash of launching cylinders is an imagined nightmare only a heartbeat away, the collapse of civilization under piles of mouldering, mutating red weed.

I shiver with fear every time I look at it. I bet many of you do too, as you stand alone surrounded my menacing whispering trees. But we all come back for more to see the God of War gaze contemptuously down at us, seeding our mind with fears...

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