Friday, 21 March 2014
According to the proprietor of the inter-cosmic Old Phoenix Inn, many timelines exist at the same time. Thus, the Time Patrol and Old Phoenix series present contradictory cosmologies.
However, could the variable timeline guarded by the Time Patrol itself be one of the many universes that have fleeting access to the Old Phoenix? Thus, could Manson Everard of the Patrol also find his way to the inter-cosmic Inn?
As things stand, the timecycles of the Time Patrol, the time corridors of the Wardens and Rangers, the self-propelling time travelers of the Eyrie and of Jack Havig's rival group and the many doors to the Old Phoenix exist in the alternative realms of Poul Anderson's imagination as expressed in different volumes of his complete works. However, we are free to speculate about connections between various ultimates like:
the "gods" of the further future in "Flight To Forever";
the literal gods of Anderson's heroic and historical fantasies;
the Elder Races that exist, or are believed to exist, in various timelines;
the cosmic energy accessed by the Black Nebulans and the Chereionites;
cosmic AI in the further future of Anderson's Genesis;
the transtemporally communicating interstellar civilization of Starfarers;
the mysterious licensing authority of the Old Phoenix.
Ideally, each fictional universe could be continued indefinitely while, at the same time, additional volumes or subtle inter-textual cross-references could be used to construct an immense hyper-cosmic unity. Anderson's canon is vast and makes us wish for more.
(Tomorrow: coach from North West to South East of England, depart 6.00 am, return evening, anti-racist march through London (No Nazi parties in the European Parliament!), no time for blogging, plenty of time for creative thinking on the Motorway, fried breakfast and coffee in the Services.)