Union

Digital, 2011 (revised 2017)

This may be an idyllic setting.  Lush greenery surrounds a stretch of water linked to a distant sea, fed by two enormous waterfalls from which the flowing streams seem to appear as if from nowhere.  The location looks peaceful despite the cascades, and there is a sense of calm, a place where one could rest and feel at home.

But this is certainly not of our Earth.  A large cratered world hangs in the sky, closer than our own Moon would ever be, suggesting that we might be standing on a moon of that grim planet, or perhaps this is part of a double planet system.  Either way, the reddish tinge in the sky, dropping to an intense yellow near the horizon, confirms that this is an alien land which may not be as friendly as it first seems.

If we look closely, the grass may seem tortured, the movement of water from the hills frenzied, the atmosphere poisoned.  There is something here that is deeply inimical to our way of thinking.  Union with this world might seem attractive at first glance but, as always in the realms of space travel, a little caution may be advisable.

Text: Richard Hayes