Farming Saturn’s Rings

Stardate 2095 – Case IH and New Holland have moved into outer space.

Farmers finding rich belts of airless crop land encircling the last plains.

Riding in suits of space farmers they grow that which a dying planet eats.

Corn grows huge without gravity, wheat rich and heavy, flax linen grown.

Earth, fracked and urbanized, the plains submit to the dust and storms.

Farmers never quit, they just find new fields to grow, farmers gone.

Ships carry precious cargo, edible cargo, to a waiting ravenous world.

No stores, no shelves. Just waiting numbered crowds. Gathering food.

Each ticket gets you a container. Your feed for the season. Eat up folks.



Stardate: 2098 John Deere and Massey move themselves to the moon base.

Setting up shop for the thousand acre greenhouses, running on solar electric.

Diesels succumb to the electric motor hum, as veggies grow tall in zero gravity.

Farmers won’t quit farming, and smuggled heritage seeds bloom in hidden fields.

The green market bustles with those bringing compost to barter for spuds

Dancing in the fields loosens soil, farm aid now is back breaking labour.

Each person an acre or ten, each person knows they live to grow, grow to live.

Farming Saturn’s rings, and greenhouses on the moon. Watching a blue planet

fade to grey as the dust encircles and the seas rise to eat away at their shores.

In tractor cabs dreamers dream, of a day when they can go home to farm.

Generations will hear stories of ‘way back when’ we farmed the earth before

we sold her out to the highest bidder and lost it all in a grim battle for greed.



Stardate: 2099 Smugglers planting seeds in illegal greenhouses. Lush growth.

Farmers, with smuggled soil from hidden fields on earth, grow the heirlooms.

Flax for linen and oil, oats and wheat for bread. Barley for the wobbly pops.

Straw and waste make compost. Feeding small farm animals for extra food.

Saturn’s rings grow without seasons, the greenhouses of the moon bloom.

Farmers still looking longingly towards their Earthly home and wonder

when the promised ‘New Earth’ will come and if they’ll get to farm it again.

Most precious of gifts, generation to generation, a small vial of soil of home.

Each one holding the last piece of land, the last piece of earth, and knowing

it is more valuable than gold, more rare than purple diamonds and theirs.


If you want a dystopian novel about farming check out Farming 101 on Amazon, written by our friend Gary Martens, who also teaches agriculture at the University of Manitoba.  This sci fi farm poem is inspired by sci fi movies and books like Starwars, Dune, Battlestar Galactica and StarTrek.  Come by the pub and see who else is writing science fiction, space and dystopian poetry.  


The science fiction of farming – auto steer, GPS, field mapping on the go and other wonders are reality today.  Even a few years ago they were either pure fantasy or laughed at as improbable and impossible.  Technology moves fast, and farmers lead the way in many instances.



  1. shanyns said,

    November 17, 2013 at 8:47 pm

    The book I referred to. 🙂

  2. Mary said,

    November 17, 2013 at 11:40 pm

    Yours is a much needed perspective, Shanyn.

  3. ManicDdaily said,

    November 18, 2013 at 12:00 am

    So scary. People are idiotic. As you point out so eloquently (and much more vividly, ir less rudely than that.) Thanks, Shanyn. k.

    • shanyns said,

      November 18, 2013 at 1:49 am

      It is scary, and people can be slow to pick up on things – like food doesn’t come from stores as a point of origin! 🙂 So glad you stopped by.

  4. November 18, 2013 at 12:10 am

    I like the look into the future ~ Scary indeed but really appreciate your perspective in the last stanza ~

    • shanyns said,

      November 18, 2013 at 1:51 am

      Thank you so much. I am hoping, and praying, that people can understand how important living soil is and how vital our land is for everyone. 🙂

  5. brian miller said,

    November 18, 2013 at 12:19 am

    ha. pretty cool thought on the farming in greenhouses on the moon….sold the earth to the highest bidder…ugh…scary a thought tht the dirt becomes so precious but dangerously true too…

    • shanyns said,

      November 18, 2013 at 1:53 am

      Greenhouses on the moon are not so far away, but I can see the big field guys like my hubby drooling for the endless fields around Saturn 🙂

      And soil is so precious, but too many only see dirt 🙂 Thanks for coming by.

  6. iWriter said,

    November 18, 2013 at 12:44 am

    A reality check 🙂 Like your perspective on what’s next. I don’t think people realize how precious “dirt” really is. Thank you for this!

    • shanyns said,

      November 18, 2013 at 1:54 am

      They don’t know! Most don’t even know the difference between dirt and soil so dirt it stays, unless they buy it at a hardware store in a bag! ha ha

      Thank you so much for coming by, and sharing your thoughts on this piece. Appreciated!

  7. November 18, 2013 at 1:00 am

    Wow! WordPress allows images in comments! Never change to Blogger! I will use my emoticons!

    I am not much of a sci fi fan. And I know farming without water is useless. And I, in fact, believe the “evidences” of water on other planets is constructed. Water is love. But I see your point. Better be engaged.

    • November 18, 2013 at 1:01 am

      No! My emoticons did not show! Now I understand nothing!

    • shanyns said,

      November 18, 2013 at 1:55 am

      Water and soil – they are so important. Vital, actually, to life. Thanks for coming by.

  8. November 18, 2013 at 4:30 am

    Farming in space.. Scary but still fun in a way… Well written and so fun you did it 😉

  9. Gabriella said,

    November 18, 2013 at 7:54 am

    Original perspective Shanyn! Even if it is a scary one.

    • shanyns said,

      November 19, 2013 at 8:39 pm

      Thanks, and yes it is a bit scary too. But the best sci fi always is!

  10. dani said,

    November 18, 2013 at 11:57 am

    this is really good, Shanyn! i was just talking to someone about how there are only two farms where i live now and i can remember when there were agricultural fields as far as one could see! scary!

    • shanyns said,

      November 19, 2013 at 8:40 pm

      It is scary to see the farms disappear, and yet our hunger just grows and grows. Thanks for coming by!

  11. Bryan Ens said,

    November 20, 2013 at 11:22 pm

    Interesting take on the future of farming! And yes, we take our earth far too for granted when it is truly worth gold!

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