Everything Old Is New Again

26 Feb

War of the Worlds by Robert Czarny
This post owes its existence entirely to a suggestion made by Barry, of bmj2k.com.

* * *

The horizon crackled with the light of flame.

Gathered on a hill overlooking Grover’s Mill, New Jersey, a crowd – many with blankets draped over their shoulders to fend off the October chill – were waiting to see if the world might end.

The loudspeakers rigged at the edges of the mob sometimes brought the flat tone of a newsman, and sometimes the sharp bark of military communications.

Across the empty fields, a massive, unearthly, machine strode over the autumn grasses.

Finally, after all others seemed to have uttered their strangled death rattles into their mics, a single voice continued on, chronicling the last moments of the invasion.

The alien tripod stumbled, leaned drunkenly, then collapsed.

Orson Welles, dead a hundred years, gave a cheery warning that the production was meant only as Halloween tomfoolery, and the holographic projectors began to cycle down.

The defeated extraterrestrials shimmered into non-existence.

With the flaming country-side once again dark, the crowd began to disperse.

Young Orson Welles, from the Orson Welles Annex (click for link)

The War of the Worlds (October 30, 1938)

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3 Responses to “Everything Old Is New Again”

  1. bmj2k February 26, 2011 at 16:31 #

    This has in turn inspired me to tell my own little story of what else may have happeend on that faithful night. It may take me awhile but I think I have an angle.

    • JRD Skinner February 26, 2011 at 17:53 #

      Excellent! Looking forward to it.

      • bmj2k February 26, 2011 at 22:01 #

        I’m doing it as a newspaper front page. May take awhile but even doing it in Word I think it will come out nicely. It will have a very different tone than the one which you captured so well.

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