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Fractured 'n Fragmented

Updated on August 21, 2018

By: Wayne Brown

Pieces scattered; wreckage on the ground

Signs of a flying ship tragically fallen down

Silence overwhelms… hearing each breath

Life in tiny fragments, fractured in death

Fire and smoke; searing down to bone

Fear beyond measure; together yet alone

Time melting away, heading into rapture

Life in fragments await ol’ death’s capture

Chaos and confusion pre-cursing the dead

Scream for mercy; the prayers to be said

Flashes of hope to avoid death’s kiss

Life in fragments fall into death’s abyss

A flying ship tumbles from its lofty perch

Diving into eternity; the living left to search

Losing its flight and tumbling thereafter

Life shattered to fragments in death’s fracture

Souls lost in moments to death’s cold hand

Shards of twisted metal; debris on the land

Red essence trickles; the cause unintended

Life in full fracture; all the parts fragmented

© WBrown2012. All Rights Reserved.

16 August 2012



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    • Wayne Brown profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Brown 

      8 years ago from Texas

      @lalesu...Yes I do know. You are one of those pulled to that frontier like the moon pulls on the tide...never mind the danger, imagine the sheer magnitude of that presence. I equate it with that first moment when you sense yourself in flight...when you begin to pull away from gravity's grip and sense that feeling of freedom coming over you...there is an awe there that never gets old for me. Oh the adventures of the mind and the imagination...if they could just be real. For some select few willing to take on that risk and danger...they are. Thanks much, Laura! ~WB

    • lalesu profile image


      8 years ago from south of the Mason-Dixon

      You know how I love the stars, Wayne Brown. From those that lived long before the first glint of stardust escaped from our lungs to ones we've marvelously built and placed in the heavens to guide ourselves by. This is a beautiful tribute. I'm so excited about the SpaceX Dragon program!

    • Wayne Brown profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Brown 

      8 years ago from Texas

      @Kaili Bisson....Thank you! So glad you liked it. I appreciate the read and the comment. ~WB

    • Kaili Bisson profile image

      Kaili Bisson 

      8 years ago from Canada

      what a beautiful tribute.

    • 50 Caliber profile image

      50 Caliber 

      8 years ago from Arizona

      Wayne, again great poetry style tribute to lost pioneers who strap rockets to their ass and pull the trigger headed for space and adventure and then a safe return. I can't say I'd take the offer of a seat into space and back, I think I'd rather enter a gun fight with an airlift or ambulance for the guy I shot up to get him to the hospital for a full recovery. Even loosing would beat the odds of those who vanished in the disintegration of their multi billion dollar ride. I have to respect that bravery as higher than any risk I've ever taken when I stop and compare the fact that there exists little room for error going up or coming down, from the old days of capsules to the plane like space ships, it's been an incredible change. I never was able to see a launch in real time of the Apollo missions, seems I was busy or no TV around. Being in California I would probably have been sleeping at Cape Canaveral Time. I have seen replays of the launches.

      You captured in good words and style their commitment to the capability of those who built the craft to get them up safely and back down as well.

      I can't help but wonder when they said "foam" broke loose hitting the wing if 10 cans of spray foam and the silver duct-tape, Rocky Mountain hill billy style on a space walk to block out the heat re-entry LOL.

      Looked at Wills link, and laughed it was great, I don't think the Man misspoke. I think he took a worthy jab at Obama for playing part in putting a whole bunch of folks out of work and moving yet another source of employment to Russia. Putin's likely to offer some wages they can't refuse and they take their brains and skills to another country moving the US a few more rungs down the ladder of the war of wealth and power, while we cut our military budget as well. I'm beginning to gain respect for the Russians and their way of thinking when it comes to business, they have been to the bottom financially and are climbing back out and there are Americans who have built good businesses in Russia and are enjoying the wealth.

      All that said adds more power in my mind, to your tribute to the loss of the shuttle and crew, it marks an end to American ingenuity and employment of future children growing up to achieve the intelligence and chance at American excellence that I have seen come and start to break up on re-entry to the way I enjoyed applying myself to be able to retire and play at working on what I wanted to be, and that was just one thing "Free" I'm far from dollars rich, but I have enough and get to do as I please inside moral guidelines that seem to set well with the laws of the country, for the most part, but what happens inside my fence stays inside my fence, that doesn't mean that one would find anything illegal here past the occasional helper hired for a few days that might not have a green card, I don't ask and they don't tell, Braceros have been a part of my life since birth. 'nuff said,

      Peace and Blessings,


    • WillStarr profile image


      8 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

      It's also sad to note that we have decided to give up our leadership role in space, so that NASA can concentrate on 'Muslim Outreach".

      The astronauts who risked and sacrificed their lives must be weeping.

    • ImKarn23 profile image

      Karen Silverman 

      8 years ago

      Very nice tribute Wayne..wondering if the 'curiosity' on mars brought this on?

    • breakfastpop profile image


      8 years ago

      Beautiful and oh so sad....Voted up and awesome.

    • Wayne Brown profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Brown 

      8 years ago from Texas

      @toknowinfo...Thanks very much! It was an unforgettably sad time for this country and the families of those brave astronauts hopefully to never be repeated. ~WB

    • toknowinfo profile image


      8 years ago

      This is beautifully composed writing, as usual. I remember this shuttle disaster well. It is good you wrote about it, to help us all to never forget the astronauts.

    • Wayne Brown profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Brown 

      8 years ago from Texas

      @Gypsy Rose Lee...I hope it is the latter. Thanks much! ~WB

    • Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

      Gypsy Rose Lee 

      8 years ago from Daytona Beach, Florida

      Wonderful tribute to such a tragedy. Leaves one wondering if they realized anything at all or just went to the world beyond.

    • Wayne Brown profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Brown 

      8 years ago from Texas

      @Genna East....Yes, that was the scenario, Genna...I too hoped that it was instantaneous...I cannot imagine otherwise. Thanks much! ~WB

      @writer20...Thanks you so much, Joyce. I think this one wrote itself and I held the keyboard! ~WB

    • writer20 profile image

      Joyce Haragsim 

      8 years ago from Southern Nevada

      This sound like a wonderful tribute to the lost astronauts .

      Voted up and beautiful, Joyce.

    • Genna East profile image

      Genna East 

      8 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      I remember the Columbia disaster; it was devastating and shocking. I kept thinking of those seven brave people on that flight, and prayed that it was instantaneous to avoid prolonged suffering. I understand that a piece of insulation broke off and struck a wing only seconds after take off. The damage that resulted enabled hot gasses to seep into the wing upon re-entry.

      Your excellent poem and tribute vividly captures the shattering of both their lives and the spacecraft in which they were entrusted in only seconds.

    • Wayne Brown profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Brown 

      8 years ago from Texas

      @Hypenbird....Amen to that...the brave and dedicated, I mean. Thanks also for the good words! ~WB

    • Hyphenbird profile image

      Brenda Barnes 

      8 years ago from America-Broken But Still Beautiful

      I hope we all keep that breath of horrified awe you so eloquently describe. Those people were brave and dedicated. They deserve our remembrance and respect.. You wrote a lovely tribute. Thank you for that.

    • Wayne Brown profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Brown 

      8 years ago from Texas

      @fpherj48....Certainly my recent writing on the crash of DL191 gave me some inspiration in that area. That is what I first thought that I must be writing about....but it shifted as I moved beyond the first verse. Thanks much! ~WB

      @The Frog Prince....One of those Texas events that is always in the back of your mind....Thanks, Jim. ~WB

      @WillStarr....Yes, dangerous and spectacular in scope all at the same time. Thanks much, Bill! ~WB

    • WillStarr profile image


      8 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

      Excellent, Wayne. All such progress has inevitable high risks, but it's still stunning and horrifying when it happens.

    • The Frog Prince profile image

      The Frog Prince 

      8 years ago from Arlington, TX

      Those photos, and the incident, remain etched in my mind.

      The Frog

    • fpherj48 profile image


      8 years ago from Carson City

      Wayne...At first, I thought this was a fitting follow-up to your recent Hub....and I believe it still can serve in this way....but I see you were going in a slightly different direction. This is a wonderful description of the horrific loss of our brave space-travelers....via the space shuttle Columbia......May they RIP and know we remember their sacrifice....Sad...................................UP+++

    • Wayne Brown profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Brown 

      8 years ago from Texas

      @shonunuwho....Thank you! Such a sad, tragic, event. ~WB

      @Angela Blair...I saw a lot of the coverage on the search of that area. Sounds like something out of a sci-fi thriller with things raining down from space. Thanks, Sis! ~WB

      @drbj...Thanks much, Doc! ~WB

      @newusedcarssacram...Thank you! Glad you are enjoying vour visit! ~WB

      @Vellur...Yes, it is hard to imagine the courage that it takes or the ability to manage the lack there of. I believe the vast majority of them realize that the opportunity, even though dangerous, is something that is bigger than they can ever be in life in terms of the potential contributions. The Space Shuttle had many, many missions but Columbia and Challenger will be the two most remembered because of the loss of precious life. Thanks much! ~WB

    • Vellur profile image

      Nithya Venkat 

      8 years ago from Dubai

      Beautifully expressed poem about a sad tragedy. Astronauts are very brave and venture out into the unknown for a mission which will benefit entire humanity. Hats off to them - great poem.

    • newusedcarssacram profile image


      8 years ago from Sacramento, CA, U.S.A

      Hello Wayne Brown...

      Nice poetry...and so is your hub. Such an insightful thought you have mentioned in your hub. great job...voted up!

    • drbj profile image

      drbj and sherry 

      8 years ago from south Florida

      I also thought you were writing about a plane crash, Wayne, until I realized you used the phrase, 'fallen ship,' rather than fallen plane. Then I thought about the ill-fated shuttle. Frightening writing, my friend.

    • Angela Blair profile image

      Angela Blair 

      8 years ago from Central Texas

      Wonderful tribute to a brave crew and mission. I was in East Texas when the shuttle crashed -- and thought we were being bombed. A great deal of the wreckage was found in the county where I was -- very frightening. Best/Sis

    • whonunuwho profile image


      8 years ago from United States

      A fine tribute and remembrance to those who perished in this tragic crash. Thanks for honoring those who died.

    • Wayne Brown profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Brown 

      8 years ago from Texas

      @CloudExplorer....I was standing out in my backyard here in the DFW area that morning. I heard the sonic boom and I saw the contrails in the sky. It was the second time that I had seen a shuttle transit the sky over us. The first time was at night...unbelievable! After watching for a moment, I went about my business only to find out a bit later that the shuttle had broke up just past that of those never forget moments. Thanks much! ~WB

      @billybuc...When the first line of this came to me, I really did not know that it was about Columbia thinking more along the lines of an airplane crash. But it seemed a bit more than that. By the time that I had finished, I knew that it had to be about Columbia...the words spoke it. Poetry is strange and somewhat eery in the way that thoughts come together in our heads as if it is some kind of suggestion from beyond. Thanks much, Bill! So glad you enjoyed it. ~WB

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      8 years ago from Olympia, WA

      There is not much I can say about this one; beautiful in a very sad way, but an excellent job of writing my friend.

    • CloudExplorer profile image

      Mike Pugh 

      8 years ago from New York City

      Powerful poetry of a fallen Angel, when such things happen in life it makes us all wonder what its all worth indeed, may god bless all those who lost their lives on that infamous day the Space Shuttle Columbia went down, I'm sure they're up high in heaven.

      Beautifully written voted up and getting shared.


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