Saturday, August 26, 2017

the dance of Earth, Sun, and Moon

a Grand Eclipse

the dance of Earth with Sun
has long pulled me into its stately whirls,
Equinox and Solstice time to wake up
to bow and move with the First Movers,
whose relationship with each other
shapes how life moves upon the Earth,

a grand eclipse is coming,
when the Moon will cover the Sun,
well enough, long enough, for a band of darkness
to sweep along our country from Oregon to South Carolina,
it feels all abstract to me, exciting but distant,

we come to the Smokies,
huddled right near to where totality will pass,
to find our way to an even better seat for the show:
a daunting challenge, given the variables
of who will care, who will act on that care,
whose acting might make our moves stumble, miss the beats,
let alone what the weather might do to obscure it all,

all somehow opens for us,
including the road over the mountain,
along which a spectacular sunrise greets us,
we find a beautiful meadow where we can snack,
take a quick nap,
ready ourselves for totality to come at us,
to shiver the world into a foreboding change, 
a darkening that doesn’t seem quite right,
my wife feels the psychic glitch in her stomach,

our welding glasses paper and awkward and thin,
but safe enough to let us deny most of our normal world
so we can handle the intense radiation
of the nuclear furnace we call Sun,

my poor cameras can only allow a bright blur to come at them,
our solar glasses only let in a small percentage of what comes art them,
though it is enough for us to realize
that which is cosmic and significant,

we slip into totality, as the orb of the Sun is gone
for a large part of a minute,
out of many of us, a shout, an exclamation of awe,
for me, I tear with the power so transiently revealed
and then slipping into memory, as the day returns to itself.

by Henry H. Walker

August 21, ‘17