Planetary Protection Nursery Rhyme

No plants to see
or animal pee.
Mars has a rusty surface.

On briny slopes
under-surface hopes:
Mars hides a welcome birth place.

Robots in dust
taking pictures must
not greening, greening,
bring there any bugs,

nor on return
our greening disturb.
Don’t end Earth. That’s the purpose.

#NaPoWriMo 2016 Day 15

Published by

Richard Leis

Richard Leis is a fiction writer and poet, with his first published poem forthcoming later in 2017 from Impossible Archetype. His essays about fairy tales and technology have been published on Tiny Donkey. Richard is also the Downlink Lead for the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) team at the University of Arizona. He monitors images of the Martian surface taken by the HiRISE camera located on board the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter in orbit around Mars and helps ensure they process successfully and are validated for quick release to the science community and public. Once upon a time, Richard wrote and edited the science and technology news and commentary website Frontier Channel, hosted the RADIO Frontier Channel podcast, and organized transhumanist clubs. Follow Richard on his website (, on Goodreads (richardleis), his (@richardleis), Twitter (@richardleisjr), and Facebook (richardleisjr).