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NASA To Send Poems To Mars 106

Hugh Pickens DOT Com writes "Time Magazine reports that in and effort to involve non-rocket scientists in the next mission to the Red Planet, NASA invited the public in May to submit haiku, three line poems where 'the first and last lines must have exactly five syllables each and the middle line must have exactly seven syllables.' NASA promised to select five winners that will be adhered to the Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution Mission (MAVEN) before it is launched towards Martian airspace. 'The Going to Mars campaign offers people worldwide a way to make a personal connection to space, space exploration, and science in general, and share in our excitement about the MAVEN mission,' said Stephanie Renfrow, lead for the MAVEN Education and Public Outreach program at CU/LASP. More than 15,000 entries were submitted by space geeks and poets the world over. A couple thousand were disqualified as too long, too short, or totally inappropriate, leaving about 12,500. The public voted online, and the five top vote-getters have been announced." The winner:

It's funny, they named
Mars after the God of War
Have a look at Earth
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NASA To Send Poems To Mars

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  • by Chemisor ( 97276 ) on Friday August 09, 2013 @01:46PM (#44522839)

    Are we asking to be invaded?

    • Are we asking to be invaded?

      [snark level=99]
      I think it's more like an interstellar dick-measuring contest. The United States, confident of it's military supremacy over Earth, now greedily eyes Mars. Who knows... while they were looking for water, maybe they discovered oil and just haven't said anything yet.

      • by MRe_nl ( 306212 )

        "There is the moral of all human tales;
        Tis but the same rehearsal of the past,
        First Freedom, and then Glory â" when that fails,
        Wealth, vice, corruption, â" barbarism at last.
        And History, with all her volumes vast,
        Hath but one page".

    • by ackthpt ( 218170 )

      Are we asking to be invaded?

      We'll ward them off with the poetry of Paula Nancy Millstone Jennings of Greenbridge, Essex, England

      if that doesn't work we may have to resort to our bacterial defence shield

    • by Anonymous Coward

      The chances of anything coming from Mars are a million to one, he said.

      • by tnk1 ( 899206 )

        The chances of anything coming from Mars are a million to one, he said.

        A million to one? Shit, we're doomed.

    • by clarkkent09 ( 1104833 ) on Friday August 09, 2013 @02:11PM (#44523201)

      The winning poem sucks but what do you expect. Instead of celebrating human achievement we are sending a poem bitching about how horrible Earth is and that at a time it is the most peaceful it has ever been (at least since human civilizations took off). Talk about a lack of imagination and perspective.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        Is it really the most peaceful are you only looking at it from your little part of the world?

        • by khallow ( 566160 )

          Is it really the most peaceful

          Is this supposed to be a trick question? Let's give an example of the peace, Europe. This is the most peaceful Europe has been since probably before man arrived in Europe. They haven't had any military conflicts on the entire continent since the end of the Yugoslavia wars in 1999. That's more than ten years of no military conflicts whatsoever.

          Let's given some developing world examples, China and India. China has no border skirmishes with barbarians which differentiates this era from most of the past eras

          • by ediron2 ( 246908 )

            Numbers and selective evidence notwithstanding, I'd hardly consider the last decade an exemplary war-free period. Meanwhile, Mars hasn't attacked.

            Tell me more about this relativism that has you thinking we're no longer a warlike species. It at least sounds nice.

            • by khallow ( 566160 )

              Numbers and selective evidence notwithstanding, I'd hardly consider the last decade an exemplary war-free period.

              Selective evidence that involves at least two thirds of the world's population being in more peaceful environment than their regions have ever been since the introduction of humans?

              Tell me more about this relativism that has you thinking we're no longer a warlike species.

              Don't confuse absence of wars with absence of warlike characteristics. We don't wage wars just because we can. The incentives have to be there. And for most of the world, they aren't.

      • Voyager's golden record was way better. Bulgarian Shepherdess Song ftw.
    • Are we asking to be invaded?

      We need Space Americans to come in their alien ships and bring us peace and democracy.

    • by Smivs ( 1197859 )
      We ain't scared of Martians! We've got bacteria [wikipedia.org] and Slim Whitman. [youtube.com]
  • That's why we have to put people up there, to make it so..

  • Red sand between my toes; Summer vacation in outer space - Robin Williams

  • No, no, no (Score:3, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 09, 2013 @01:47PM (#44522877)

    They should have sent a POET. A poet. Not a poem.

  • Hurray! (Score:5, Funny)

    by xstonedogx ( 814876 ) <xstonedogx@gmail.com> on Friday August 09, 2013 @01:51PM (#44522929)

    slashdotter's lament:
    modded to oblivion
    for off-topic posts.

  • LOL ... (Score:5, Funny)

    by gstoddart ( 321705 ) on Friday August 09, 2013 @01:58PM (#44523031) Homepage

    The rovers are sad
    All this time alone on Mars
    Please send poetry

  • by Princeofcups ( 150855 ) <john@princeofcups.com> on Friday August 09, 2013 @02:09PM (#44523175) Homepage

    Haiku are NOT that simple. From wiki:

    The essence of haiku is "cutting" (kiru).[1] This is often represented by the juxtaposition of two images or ideas and a kireji ("cutting word") between them,[2] a kind of verbal punctuation mark which signals the moment of separation and colours the manner in which the juxtaposed elements are related.

    Traditional haiku consist of 17 on (also known as morae), in three phrases of 5, 7 and 5 on respectively.[3] Any one of the three phrases may end with the kireji.[4] Although haiku are often stated to have 17 syllables,[5] this is inaccurate as syllables and on are not the same.

    A kigo (seasonal reference), usually drawn from a saijiki, an extensive but defined list of such words.

  • I think David Bowie has already long since earned the right to have his material on the side of the MAVEN and pretty much any spacecraft.
  • It's one thing to send crap to where something might be alive and capable of reading it, but a planet with no known intelligent life that we've scouted out pretty well (for what it is)? What a waste of time.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Behold, my penis
    Nobody ever touches
    You could call it drought

    The pornography,
    It's all that I have these days
    Apple blossoms fall

  • I know it's cliche, but disappointed :( Oh well lol
    http://lasp.colorado.edu/maven/goingtomars/entry/?7381 [colorado.edu]
  • The English version should be seventeen words over three lines, holding five, seven and five words respectively.
  • I would say a poem should be chosen by astrophysicists or poets, but the whole concept is just to interest the public in something ultimately non-scientific.

    make your mars poem choice
    using mob intelligence
    silly message sent

    It might be cheaper than printing a poem sticker, and more interesting also, to simply state that when you view the poem over your WiFi connection, you are sending electromagnetic signals out of the atmosphere, (past triads of listening satellites), and some photons of your WiFi ac

  • Just about anything that applies the special snowflake formula to the entire human species tends to win these things. We're total suckers for anything that affirms our special-snowflakeness, even if it's our epic fascination with beating the shit out of each other.

    Vulcans? Too evolved. If doesn't count if you're good all the time. What matters is that once you were bad, but now you have risen. Otherwise you're just too smart for your own good and you don't really understand the shit that goes down.


    • please list all the other sentient species with technology.

      what, you have none? we are indeed special.

  • Send A Princess of Mars [pressbooks.com], it's public domain.

  • Went to Venus too
    Goddess of beauty and love
    Burnt our nuts (and bolts)

  • by azav ( 469988 )

    This just strikes me as a pretty useless way to spend NASA's time and money.

  • little red orb thanks
    Our visit makes cosmos vast
    no longer empty
  • Misread that as "sending PORN to mars".
  • At first I read it as "NASA To Send Peons To Mars".

    I was thinking, "Wow, here's my chance!"

  • Roses are Red
    Violets are Blue
    Pick My Poem
    Or I'll Blast You With My
    Illudium Pu-36 Explosive Space Modulator!

    - Marvin M.

Money is better than poverty, if only for financial reasons.