by Garrett Carroll
The Band from Andromeda
In Andromeda, they played in all kinds of venues—
in aqua-domes for six-eyed squids sloshing their tentacles
across see-through floors,
in the trunks of trees for blorgs pumping their stubby,
elbowless arms in unison through the air,
in ecumenopolis bars for musing avians and mammals levitating
on dusty red fabric pillows,
for the slaves self-exiled from the clubs and wars
of their origin galaxies, the new bonds of love
sent across the radio waves,
harmonies to the strands and environments
of innumerable living species.
After sweeping through Andromeda,
touring and rising to levels of unheard stardom
the band took the risk and traveled the spiraling bridge
to the Milky Way.
There they enchanted more crowds,
all types of people who jumped and pumped and howled
their anatomies through the air,
Igniting a trillion, subatomic fiery stars to sway in unison
from the homes—cliffs, caverns, forests, mountains, metropolitans,
everywhere in the galaxy, all the lighters burning bright,
swaying to the melodies and rhythms of the music.
Eventually the touring ceased, the band went quiet.
Living in the unknown and unseen void beyond
the galaxies, in a forested cabin on a living asteroid
they planned a project most ambitious in scope;
an orchestra of races coming together to create
within the most pleasing harmonic ranges, to bring the galaxies
together truly, to link the galactic bridges through sound.
Silence ensued, and fans clawed to the scant discography in anticipation.
Then one day, a single winking pluck, followed by a crescendo
through everyone’s ears. All races, genders, and creatures
processed the sound as the band and thousands of interstellar musicians
swelled into cadenced, multiethnic song.
Sounds unheard by many, many played for the first time,
Salsas and fiestas, symphony connoisseurs closing their eyes,
in clear ferocity waves of people jumping
to the booming, gliding, swirling, whizzing sounds
of strings and synths and drums and winds and vocals,
abandoning boring busy work and obligations,
the rambunctious, rebellious rockers
chanting, clapping, screaming, and singing along
to the tunes intersecting across all the galactic highways,
from the winding waters of the Grand Canyon
to the healing forests of Tornebau, from the Milky Way
The bridges formed, and people reached out to hold each other’s hands
across the galaxies, feeling each other’s souls lining their palms,
clinging strongly together in unison. The lines intersected,
the world’s stringed together, for just moments in the span of
billions of years the chaos of every biological world ceased,
and in a longing fade, the album
enters into the ether, spirited as sound to be reached
for at anytime, whether flying across the stars
or being down, face in the dirt and troubled.
An incalculable number have heard, now and forever,
The band from Andromeda…
The band from Andromeda…
The band from Andromeda…
At the frantic pace we went
space colonists settled Pluto by 2080
and humanity looked to a new frontier.
A hundred years later
we settled in Alpha Centauri,
bringing our dark matter-powered ships
across new dimensions of dust and decay,
the planets we chose behemoths among heaps of rock
with new greenery and ocean enveloping it.
A thousand years went by,
and humans no longer donning noses, lips, eyes, or ears
took to hoarding the universe on telepathic flight.
Merely thinking things brought them to reality,
though not to the extent that the universe became a playground,
no. No, even thoughts had their limits.
A hundred thousand years took us all by storm
when something out there lurked, an anomaly penetrating
all our interconnected neurological links.
We searched by mind map across empty space,
and when we came up short, our sobering thoughts
had come to view splattered with the blood of our ancestors.
It’s been a million years
and we’ve forgotten who we were.
We’re ghosts lodged in spaces so thin and subatomic
that few even see us, including ourselves.
Sometimes we bump into each other and mourn our nostalgic bodies,
and things seem somewhat alright. On Earth, it’s much better.
Since they never left, we watch over them like guardians as best we can.
Sometimes we trip them over their wires and cables just for fun,
and they used to rant on and on about some biblical armageddon.
but they don’t know who we are, even we’ve forgotten,
and they seem just like us, but young and naive.
Hopefully they amass the technology to leave soon,
the anomaly that changed us is near.
Having trekked through the blizzards of Colorado to the sweltering suburbs of Arizona, Garrett Carroll now works as a poet and writer.
His work has previously appeared in Star*Line, Utopia Science Fiction Magazine, and Red Planet Magazine (now defunct). When he is not writing, he can be found playing music, trying new hobbies, and exploring video game worlds. More of his work can be found here.