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Monthly Archives: April 2013

Cabinet of curiosities created from Mars Curiosity Rover images.  Rover image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

Cabinet of curiosities created from Mars Curiosity Rover images. Rover image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

What curiosity can we house
within four walls

now that we’ve touched down
in the next backyard?

What prize will stay put
in partitioned space

and homestead there

and never dream
of the next room

content to be contained

and not instinctively
roam?

The Golden Record, launched on Voyagers 1 and 2 in 1977.  Image credit: Credit NASA/JPL/Caltech.

The Golden Record, launched on Voyagers 1 and 2 in 1977. Image credit: Credit NASA/JPL/Caltech.

In summary,
we’re sending you this record

because here on Earth

we sing
we greet each other
we marvel

at an X-rayed hand
beside the “Rite of Spring”
and strands of DNA
unraveling

pieces of ourselves
assembled
just once

for you

believe us
as you listen

we love
down to the smallest
groove.

Ithaca Chasma on Saturn's moon, Tethys, photographed by Cassini.  Image credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute.

Ithaca Chasma on Saturn’s moon, Tethys, photographed by Cassini. Image credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute.

Yawning hollow

there to be crossed
or stared into

or both

take your pick

hesitate

legs dangling
on the edge
of the scarps

or descend

on the scars
a moon made
into paths.

“Without monsters and gods, art cannot enact a drama.” –Mark Rothko

Without monsters and gods

Artist's conception of a supermassive black hole.  Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

Artist’s conception of a supermassive black hole. Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

the cosmic egg
never gets coiled up
and strangled
into bits
by a snake

to make an earth

much less
sky and ocean

and Cronus
eats gruel

and stars
never grow
or succumb

instead
the monotony
of the small
and insignificant
blankets

nothing pulled
or devoured

no drama

to move us.

Brown dots indicate where Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 impacted Jupiter's atmosphere in July 1994.  Image credit: NASA/Hubble Space Telescope Comet Team

Brown dots indicate where Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 impacted Jupiter’s atmosphere in July 1994. Image credit: NASA/Hubble Space Telescope Comet Team

In lieu of a comet
send this poem
to punch the atmosphere
of another world

and scar on impact

and seed water
everywhere

the words no longer intact
but somehow still mine.

Our solar system.  Image credit: NASA. Congress is currently considering NASA's FY14 budget.  Support planetary sciences by contacting your congressman or congresswoman or tweet your support to #fundPlanetary.

Our solar system. Image credit: NASA.
Congress is currently considering NASA’s FY14 budget. Support planetary sciences funding by contacting your congressman or congresswoman or tweet your support to #fundPlanetary.

I want it back

that jar full of quarters
I earned from chores

protected from a brother
under penalty of DEATH

so I could buy
that toy
waiting on the shelf.

I want it back

and you can have
that Mickey Mouse magician toy
its hands too slow
and always revealing
the trick.

I know what I want
from the jar now

will barter and beg

for what grade school teachers
hawked to us in science class

the only advertising
painted foam ball planets run through with wire rings

the real wares
we were told
further out
and suspended
magically

have to see it to believe it!
no wires!

and no sleight of hand necessary.

Yeah, I’m saving my jar for that.