In a twenty four hour cycle
The earth, like a top, will spin
Day is where the sunshine falls
Night is where the light has been.
The earth goes on another trip
It circles round the sun
It takes a year to make one lap
Four seasons, and it’s done.
Our seasons vary in their length
With the height and distance from the poles
And influence of the sea.
For four and one half billion years
Mother earth she’s hard to tame
Because the chosen route is round
Things change, but stay the same.
–by Peter Elias
Collected from the excellent Windows to the Universe site
If all a top physicist knows
About the Truth be true,
Then, for all the so-and-so’s,
Futility and grime,
Our common world contains,
We have a better time
Than the Greater Nebulae do,
Or the atoms in our brains.
Marriage is rarely bliss
But, surely it would be worse
As particles to pelt
At thousands of miles per sec
About a universe
Wherein a lover’s kiss
Would either not be felt
Or break the loved one’s neck.
Though the face at which I stare
While shaving it be cruel
For, year after year, it repels
An ageing suitor, it has,
Thank God, sufficient mass
To be altogether there,
Not an indeterminate gruel
Which is partly somewhere else.
Our eyes prefer to suppose
That a habitable place
Has a geocentric view,
That architects enclose
A quiet Euclidian space:
Exploded myths – but who
Could feel at home astraddle
An ever expanding saddle?
This passion of our kind
For the process of finding out
Is a fact one can hardly doubt,
But I would rejoice in it more
If I knew more clearly what
We wanted the knowledge for,
Felt certain still that the mind
Is free to know or not.
It has chosen once, it seems,
And whether our concern
For magnitude’s extremes
Really become a creature
Who comes in a median size,
Or politicizing Nature
Be altogether wise,
Is something we shall learn.
The poet can sing to a lone bright star,
but we astronomers look at all of them
and the shining nebulosity between.
We sweep to plot a map of every point and blur
of light, and calculate the dance of three
thousand, none quite alike. Poets, attend to
the river of milk braiding and unbraiding its hair,
there is no one love and no one
fate. We are drops in a luminosity,
a silent roar of hearts opening in the dark.
by Laura Long from The Eye of Caroline Herschel: A Life in Poems (Finishing Line Press, 2013),
The blissful butterfly seems unconcerned,
while sipping nectar, flitting with its mate,
but it remembers everything it learned
when caterpillar seemed its only fate.
When it could only inch along and feed
to saturate its flesh with pungency
of bitter leaves – a deft defense, indeed,
from predators from whom it could not flee –
it literally was embittered by
its appetite and all that it consumed.
It never dreamt that one day it would fly.
While lacking wings, how could it have presumed?
Recalling its state before pupation,
its pulsing wings signal celebration.
by James Kotsybar
Originally published at https://causewaylit.com/masons-road-2/issue-11-joy/poetry-11/morphed/
NASA has selected James Ph. Kotsybar’s poetry for launch into Martian orbit — the first literature to another world. His poetry appears in the mission log of the Hubble Telescope, and has won honors from the Society of Classical Poets, Odes To The Olympians, Ohio’s Ingenuity Center and Balticon. Other publication credits include The Bubble, Askew, LUMMOX Press and Sixfold. Performances include The Los Angeles Performing Arts Center, Llhasa Club, Beyond Baroque Gallery, KCSB 91.9 FM, KDB 93.7 FM, and three cable television channels. He co-owns Chaotic&Exotics (orchid nursery) in northern Santa Barbara County, is an accredited judge for the American Orchid Society and breeder of over a hundred orchid hybrids.