When Randy sent me these images of his stunning model, he wrote:
Ray Bradbury's 1949 story "Kaleidoscope" begins:
"The first concussion cut the rocket up the side with a giant can opener. The men were thrown into space like a dozen wriggling silverfish."
The bulk of the story takes place in roughly an hour as the ejected crew of twelve men spin off in different trajectories toward their imminent deaths — the Sun, the Moon, re-entry into Earth's atmosphere and one man into a passing meteorite shower. All they have left in their lives is radio contact via their headsets, and roughly one hour of connection to come clean with one another about their lives and relationships. And they attempt to do so — there is anger, terror, accusations, philosophical musings and grief. But as they approach their individual ends and loss of contact with each other a desire for peace and forgiveness creeps into their last words and goodbyes.
Hollis is the last man we are with, he is alone and plummeting toward Earth, these are his final thoughts:
But there's no one here but myself, and how can you do good all alone? You can't. Tomorrow night I'll hit Earth's atmosphere…When I hit the atmosphere, I'll burn like a meteor. I wonder…if anyone will see me?
The small boy on the country road looked up and screamed. "Look Mom, look! A falling star!"
The blazing white star fell down the sky of dusk in Illinois.
"Make a wish," said his mother. "Make a wish."
More photos after the jump.