A Vision in a
by Christopher G.
Steop, a junior space cadet, was having his
morning cup of coffee in the S.S. (Space Ship)
Futilitys cafeteria. He had not slept well
and was not looking forward to the days
assignment; fixing the Trochaic Thrusters.
Although they had been disused for years, it was
the junior cadets responsibility to
maintain said thrusters. Rotep lit up a marijuana
cigarette (the use of tobacco had been
discontinued early in the 21st Century), stood up
and walked resignedly towards the engine room.
reached the engine room he found old Mr. Housman
who, as always, was pursuing his pointless work
with undue diligence and a song upon his lips.
of God, the laws of man,
He may keep that will and can;
Not I: let God and man decree
Laws for themselves and not for me!1
lads tis our turn now, to hear such tunes
as killed the cow.2 thought
Rotep. Hello Mr. Housman, how are you today?
hullo my lad! Very well indeed, say, hand me that
wrench, will you?
you be so happy? You know that these thrusters
will never be used again, how do you go on?
Rotep queried, as he handed the wrench to Mr.
by not asking myself questions such as those.
Shoulder the sky, my lad, and drink your ale.3
that does seem to help, but only temporarily.
replied Rotep, in between gulps of beer.
happiness is temporary, my boy, so make it your
goal to rape the world of as much of it as you
all well and good in theory, but putting it into
practice could get one into a lot of trouble.
Thats just the laymens term for
sound of twisting metal interrupted their debate.
A smaller craft made of what looked like wood,
had crashed through the roof of the engine room.
A ramp descended from it and two beings in
strange clothes proceeded down the ramp. The
being in the lead was the first to speak,
Are you Rotepconarmy Steop?
am, who are you?
the S.T.C. or Superfluous Time Commandos;
youve heard of us, Im sure.
why do you do it?
we do what?
time commandos, if your services are not needed?
Youve got it all turned around, you twit;
it is the time thats superfluous,
not the commandos. We had too much time
on our hands, so we became time-travelling
then. What do you want with me?
you dont know the significance of your name?
do you mean?
the future of the greatest and most artful form
of literature; poetry. Your parents were ignorant
and semi-literate. On the day before your birth,
I gave your father a slip of paper with a name on
it. This name was what you were destined to be
called, unfortunately your lunkheaded father got
all the letters, or alphabets as he
called them, mixed up.
is my name supposed to be? Rotepconarmy
real name is Contemporary Poets!
As soon as
these words were spoken, Rotep vanished.
you it wouldnt work. said the second
title of this story, A Vision in a Dream,
is also the alternate title of Samuel Taylor
Coleridges famous opium fuelled poem Kubla
piece also contains direct quotes from three of
Alfred Edward Housmans poems, as below.
From The Laws of God, The laws of Man
From Terrence, This Is Stupid Stuff
From The Chestnut Casts His Flambeaux