A Eulogy for Mars



Wayne Reinagel



On the seventh day of global annihilation, our planet grew silent,

having quietly endured the nuclear lightning and thunder.

With arrogance and conceit we, the people of the fourth planet,

have virtually torn our world asunder.


All the speeches and promises by our leaders, in the end,

were naught but false words and hollow sound.

And so, I leave this message tablet, hoping and praying

that by a more sympathetic race, it will be found.


My powerful steed slows to a quick halt,

all six legs stomping and creating billowy clouds of red dust.

Such a simple-minded creature, he will never fully comprehend

the destruction caused by our vanity and lust.


His leathery, olive-green skin, slick with sweat,

glistens beneath the bright twin moons.

And he eyes me curiously, wondering why,

why have we stopped our galloping across the dunes.


To further my view, I stand tall in my stirrups

and the leather saddle creaks in protest.

As I draw in a deep breath, a sharp, stabbing pain

reminds me of the black death slowly growing in my chest.


To the west once flowed a beautiful river, sweet and clear,

to the far north, a simple wooded park.

But now, I see only a jagged, dusty scar etched in the rock,

and all the barren ground is lifeless and dark.


During the short time my species carelessly ruled the world,

it has become a dried-out, lifeless husk.

The skies are filled with radioactive dust and grit,

once brilliant sunlight is now forever dusk.


What eulogy should be written for the billions of my people

who have suffered, wept, and died?

After foolishly raping and pillaging every known resource,

we have now caused our own irreversible genocide.


Barely visible through the dust clouds overhead is planet Urth,

a flawless gem of green and blue.

Perhaps in ten thousand years, new life will rise from the seas,

a great race, proud and true.


They might ponder why this nearest neighboring planet,

is so lifeless, so barren, so dead.

Will our graceful, scarlet cities survive till then

or simply vanish beneath the drifting sands, cold and red?


Perhaps these Urthlings will visit my homeworld,

and the sad message on this tablet they will find.

I only hope a few will mourn our passing with compassion,

and may their prayers to God be kind.


Oh, how the mighty have fallen, as the once-great species of Mars,

has now become frail, weak, and small.

And now, on this day of judgment,

I offer this final epitaph for my doomed race may God forgive us all.



The End