This was written some time before 2012, when the end of the Mayan long calendar was a topic of some concern. I was deeply sceptical of all the tales of a planet twin to ours, but now astronomers have found some freely roaming planets and, more recently, signs of one which might belong to our solar system. (See this month’s Sky at Night on BBC iPlayer if you’re interested.) So there you go – nothing’s impossible!
This has been edited from its original form.
Have I a twin? A long lost other half of me?
Long aeons I have roamed the solar skies,
alone in all the orbits of my years.
So many ages now have passed me by
I have no mem’ries of a long lost twin.
I cannot tell you whether it is so,
nor, if it’s true, the reason why she left
and took a path so sundered from my own.
Those whom I have borne across the dark,
and through the cold, vast, emptiness of space
have myths of how it was before she left,
and how it will be when she comes again.
But somehow these myths do not all agree:
Will blest renewal come when she returns,
or if our circling paths become confused
will she bring destruction down on us?
I’m struggling with too many troubles now,
I need no fears to add to all my pain.
People have changed so much in these last years,
losing strength of mind and body both,
while I’ve been weakened in too many ways,
by all their thoughtless selfishness and greed.
Their lives are ruled by pointless hopes and fears
too focussed on themselves and their desires.
So few there are who care at all for me –
for me, their world, or any other lives.
So now they each fall prey to myths and tales,
and are as prone to panic as to hope.
Vainly they spend their time and strength in fear
of ideas which were planted in their minds
by those who know no more than them of truth,
but seek for profit and don’t care at all
if they’re lies which will never come to pass.
Should more disasters come now with a twin
I cannot help the children I have borne,
nor is there any way they could save me.
Have I a twin? In truth I don’t think so.
I have enough dread truths for me to fear,
and urgent need of saving deeds to do.
O hear my plea, and look around at me,
and at your myriad lives so intertwined
which I have borne through all the aeons past.
Forget your fears, gird up your loins in hope.
You need each other, bless each other now!
There may yet be a chance of paradise
if you will work and strive to make it so!
And yes, I know, it’s not great verse. But I’m only human after all!