Fermi's Paradox

by Andrew Wei

What if
this is as good as it gets,
and the only future we inherit
is our own? As in, tomorrow
will arrive precisely on schedule.
No starry messengers
interrupting the evening news.
No one beamed up
out of their living rooms
unless one of us earthlings
first figures out how it’s done.

There will be
no signal from God, no miracle word
to which we will raise our heads
and live on in perfect wonder.
Not even our own blunt calculus,
born of a billion networked machines,
will come alive to show us
a more optimal way
to grow old.

Tell me
when I can stop waiting. For
the radio telescopes
to cease crying
into an endless night.
For the stars to descend
from their cosmic loneliness
to fill the great gaping wells
of our unkindnesses. What am I
to dream of, instead,
if what awaits us is only
what we know?

Andrew Wei was born in Syracuse, New York, and holds a degree in electrical engineering. His poetry has previously appeared in print in Reunion: The Dallas Review. He lives and works in Dallas, Texas.