QUARANTINE Copyright 1997 By Joe Morales

What a beautiful system there!
Especially the third world from its star."
Exclaimed the excited young starship traveler.
"Oh please. Oh Please. May we sojourn there?"

What do you see between Mars & Jupiter?"
Clipped the intersystem elder
whose eyes flickered from upon its shoulder.

"A belt of planetary fragments and clutter...
 Why?" Asked the youth of its teacher.
"It means none may come, or go, or intervene.
It means that this system is under quarantine."
Said the elder in a voice that seemed so mean.

"How unfortunate." Whined the sad-tinged teen.
"What smashed a world to make such a scene?"

"Who knows?"Shrunk the elder in resign.
 "For us it's a warning...   A very rare sign."