From: Alfred Lehmberg <Lehmberg@snowhill.com> Date: Sat, 08 Nov 1997 15:07:16 -0600 Fwd Date: Sat, 08 Nov 1997 20:30:48 -0500 Subject: Alfred's Odd Ode #197 Apology to MW #197 (For November 8, 1997) A little female mongrel dog entombed in icy space, Unasked, so disrespected, yet a credit to the race. She starved to death, her air ran out, or burned up, but she suffered. She was the one, the first in space, surcease not made, or offered. She was just a dog, beneath concern, of shiny *honored* man. She was so completely terrified, and she couldn't understand. Her butt was shaved, electrodes placed, this side of vivisection, Then blasted into inky space, bereft of all affection. Laika was the small dog's name I commemorate with verse. She was the one so chosen, and in space she was the first. Of all the flesh that ever was from right back to the Cambrian She was the first to breath in space -- a very special champion. Forty years and now they choose to honor with a plaque The sacrifice she made unasked, though it caused her death, in fact. Better late than never, but 'twould been much better still To long ago have placed her stone on the highest sun washed hill. Half a year she spun the sky, then to Earth at last, ablaze. I wonder that some saw her as she burned up in the flames. Perhaps a child, chance looking up, and seeing shooting stars, Made a wish for her own puppy, and then thought of candy bars. Lehmberg@snowhill.com >From ABC News: As Russian cosmonauts completed a spacewalk around the Mir orbital station on Monday, a memorial was unveiled in Moscow to a pioneer who gave her life to make their mission possible=97a small mongrel dog called Laika. Exactly 40 years after she was blasted into orbit aboard the Soviet Sputnik 2, becoming the first living creature in space, Laika was finally remembered on a plaque a the Moscow research center where she was trained. On Nov. 3, 1957, just 30 days after the launch of the first Sputnik announced the Soviet lead in the space race to a stunned Western world, Laika (Russian for husky) was strapped into the 1,100-pound Sputnik 2 and launched into eternity. Unlike the more celebrated Belka and Strelka, who three years later blazed the trail for the first manned space flight by Yuri Gagarin in 1961, Laika was never destined to return. To howls of protest from animal lovers in the West, Soviet officials said Laika, a stray rounded up from the streets, died peacefully after a week in orbit when her air ran out. Western researchers have said she was more likely roasted to death when Sputnik 2's heat shields came away as it settled into its Earth orbit. It burned up on reentry 163 days later. While the first Sputnik revealed the Soviet lead in space, Laika's flight was a stunning follow-up because it underlined Moscow's intention to put a man in orbit. -- Explore the Alien View? http://www.fortunecity.com/roswell/arecibo/46/ "I cleave the heavens, and soar to the infinite. What others see from afar, I leave far behind me." - Giordano Bruno, while burning at the fundamentalist's stake for a basic respect.
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