First Landing







Ken Poyner


First Landing


We were prepared to take them
To our leader. All manner of lights
And sound devices were arrayed
To allow us to demonstrate a mathematics
We hoped we both held in common.
But in the landing clearing what they first

Addressed was the grass. They marveled
The respiration, found some sympathy
With the diligence of photosynthesis,
Moved on to a patch of vines
Bedeviling a local farmer’s fence.

We tried a few flashes, random
Musical tones, a short light and
Sound mini-symphony, but elicited no response.
We wondered for some time if maybe
We should go to them, arms
Outstretched, try to engage
In pidgin conversation. Would we be
Undetected, tolerated, even challenging?

And then, at the edge of the fallow field,
They apprehended the trees.


Ken Poyner’s collection of short fiction, Constant Animals, and The Book of Robot, can be obtained from Barking Moose Press, Look for Avenging Cartography, flash, in mid-2017. He serves as bewildering eye-candy at his wife’s power lifting affairs. His poetry of late has been sunning in Analog, Asimov’s, Poet Lore, The Kentucky Review; and his fiction has yowled in Spank the Carp, Red Truck, Café Irreal, Bellows American Review.


Editor’s Note: This poem continues a motif of plant life and “botanophilic” aliens; the image of a dandelion with water drops (from Max Pixel) is beautiful and alluring.

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