Gene Cernan Boards the Apollo 17 Lunar Module

2019 FlashBack Fiction Microfiction Competition: Moon
Second Place

Gene Cernan Boards the Apollo 17 Lunar Module
by Sutton Strother

In his Boy Scout days, he had wandered off trail into thick woods and convinced himself that once he returned to his troop, no one would ever see those trees again. This is not that (in his absence nothing here will ever slither, stalk, perch, grow) and it is (the moon will never get lonesome for him) and it isn’t (someday others may grind the lunar soil beneath their boots) and it is (he will carry the weight of last looks to the grave; he carries it even now, beyond death, as far as anyone knows).

Sutton Strother is a writer and English instructor living in New York. Her work has been featured in SmokeLong Quarterly, Pithead Chapel, Jellyfish Review, CHEAPPOP, and elsewhere. You can find more of her work at She tweets @suttonstrother.