poems as hand- and foot-holds on a glass mountain

Space Travel

 

 

From a plane window high over the brown Midwest

at flight speed we seem to be drifting, 

the land slowly creeping under our wings

 

From a beachhead we watch waves come at us,

not to us, making their own time

As we watch, our time fades into theirs

suddenly or slowly or neither

when it has happened it has always been so

 

A raspberry thicket works its patch of earth

pushing tart berries at us day by summer day

we can think of as offerings but that is our time

on its time they are a moment of a rolling cycle

of birth and death, each moment of which 

     is the whole cycle

 

A wordless time not quite indifferent

to whether we pick and eat their berries

or birds do, or no one does

and they fall into the patch of earth they work

 

Between them and us, our time and theirs

is mutual travel; them at us, us at them

across what neither knows or can know

 

Space travel.  Drifting over a shimmering expanse

of delay, of anticipation, of foreshadowing,

of arriving having never left

no thing wasted, no thing gained

seen now as a vastness that keeps changing 

to smallness and back again

at many speeds, at once

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