2015-09-18

To steer by

Artist's rendering ULAS J1120+0641
(OK, so the northern star isn't a quasar, call it artistic license...)

What's to say here?

Maybe nothing.  Let the poem speak for itself.











To steer by


If I should go to seek the northern star
I'll shoe my stick in adamant
and take whichever road winds farthest
through wider and more disjunct lands --
a drunkard's life journey, endless in retelling
while the eyes fuzz at 3 a.m.

—although I'll leave before the end of this
or any other tale. Many miles expect
unhurried feet and gaze which notes
the climate cooling as I walk, sees
how a plant displaces softer weeds,
and feels it satisfies some need:
translating feet to miles.

But is there any effort of the patient stride
to bring one to the place of total ease,
to stand upon the landscape where it's clean,
unstirred beneath the empty air,
and the sky a passacaglia
for unaccompanied star?

If I should come beside you as I walk—
in dust, or mud, or chill with sprinkled rain—
maybe I will ask about the road ahead
and while you'll think me friendly in my way,
you will not drag my eyes from the horizon.





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