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PRAISE FOR POPE BROCK “Pope Brock is the sky-gazer and writer our culture needs at this moment. This book is deft, funny, profound in its implications —and also a grave prediction about the mess that may soon be transferred from Earth to the moon. A beguiling and original story by a writer whose wisdom is only matched by his wicked comic timing.” —SARAH BRAUNSTEIN, author of The Sweet Relief of Missing Children “Whenever I’m reading a Pope Brock book I always fall for the writing and then for him. This book about the moon is his most deliciously, comically personal one. Though the reader finds herself in happy contemplation of crisping ex-lovers with lasers from a future lunar workplace, or perhaps having imperfect sex in perfect spheres of water, or simply socializing on the moon with well-adapted sociopaths, nevertheless we also get to know the fiercely earthbound heart of Pope Brock. His is a vision both funny and horrifying, a Seussian galaxy of rumpus absurdity and straight-talking hard truths. By the end of it one thinks, ‘Ah, Humanity’ but right upon that one thinks, ‘Thank goodness for Pope Brock.’” —LEIGH ALLISON WILSON, author of From the Bottom Up “Pope Brock turns out to be the perfect armchair cosmonaut to ponder the possible pleasures and pitfalls of life on the moon. Another Fine Mess is a very funny and provocative rumination on the big move to off-planet real estate.” —MARK HASKELL SMITH, author of Naked at Lunch “Aninspiredobserverwithapoet’sheart,hisinvestigationinto our lunar future is informed, wry and sublimely readable.” —CATHY GALVIN, founder of the Word Factory, London “Most heavenly, thanks to the wryly hilarious tone . . . A delight.” —JANET MASLIN, New York Times, from “Janet Maslin’s 10 Favorite Books of 2008” for Charlatan “Brock’s work made me think.” —RALPH RANALLI, Boston Globe for Charlatan “Brock has a gift for making a reader shift sympathies . . . [he] knows how to tell a good story.” —ANDREA HIGBIE, New York Times for Indiana Gothic “Pope Brock’s historical reach almost feels like innovation.” —ANDREW LEVY, Chicago Tribune for Indiana Gothic ANOTHER FINE MESS Life on Tomorrow’s Moon Pope Brock Red Hen Press | Pasadena, CA Another Fine Mess Copyright © 2017 by Pope Brock All Rights Reserved No part of this book may be used or reproduced in any manner whatsoever without the prior written permission of both the publisher and the copyright owner. Illustrations by John Cote Book design by Selena Trager Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Names: Brock, Pope, author. Title: Another fine mess : life on tomorrow's Moon / Pope Brock. Description: First edition. | Pasadena, CA : Red Hen Press, [2017] Identifiers: LCCN 2017011349 | ISBN 9781597090407 (softcover : acid-free paper) | ISBN 9781597095075 (ebook) Classification: LCC PS3552.R612 A6 2017 | DDC 814/.54—dc23 LC record available at Elements of Chapter 1 appeared originally in Meridian The National Endowment for the Arts, the Los Angeles County Arts Commission , the Dwight Stuart Youth Fund, the Max Factor Family Foundation , the Pasadena Tournament of Roses Foundation, the Pasadena Arts & Culture Commission and the City of Pasadena Cultural Affairs Division, the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs, the Audrey & Sydney Irmas Charitable Foundation, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Amazon Literary Partnership, and the Sherwood Foundation partially support Red Hen Press. First Edition Published by Red Hen Press For Dillon, the poet voyager, and for Hannah, who saw the stars in the ceiling This page is left intentionally blank If dreams were thunder And lightning was desire This old house would have burned down A long time ago. —John Prine This page is left intentionally blank ...


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