Scholar Alan Elms, who has been working on a biography of Paul M. A. Linebarger / Cordwainer Smith, just emailed me a link to this article about Cordwainer Smith. (Hmm, you have to click through on “Read More” to see the link.) I was amused by the thought of my father as a “part time earthling.”
Here’s a bit from that article: “There is something endearing about an author who is so open and unembarrassed in sharing his weird fantasies. And, to be fair, Smith constantly reaches for mythic grandeur in his accounts.” Well wroth reading the whole thing.
Was he Kirk Allen? Dunno. I used to think not, but Alan Elms has made a good case to me that he could have been.
I’m fortunate enough to take part in online discussion groups in we share news of developments such as recombinant DNA technology, quantum computing, hybrid biomolecular/semiconductor circuitry, and electronically shared consciousness (as in “The Game of Rat and Dragon”), and there are times I know Cordwainer Smith leans down from whereever he is and smiles. Our race, for all its ingenuity at murder and mayhem, also has a way of harnessing its dreams as well as its nightmares. Those of us old enough to have read his stories know that Cordwainer Smith’s dreams may all come true sooner than we think.