Cosmic Gall

Neutrinos they are very small.
They have no charge and have no mass
And do not interact at all.
The earth is just a silly ball
To them, through which they simply pass,
Like dustmaids down a drafty hall
Or photons through a sheet of glass.
They snub the most exquisite gas,
Ignore the most substantial wall,
Cold-shoulder steel and sounding brass,
Insult the stallion in his stall,
And, scorning barriers of class,
Infiltrate you and me! Like tall
And painless guillotines, they fall
Down through our heads into the grass.
At night, they enter at Nepal
And pierce the lover and his lass
From underneath the bed – you call
It wonderful; I call it crass.

 

John Updike

Last Day in Space

Last Day in Space

Tomorrow we light our rocket,
we burn our engines and likewise,
burn a hole in the sky,
And thus fall toEarth.
How does one spend your last day in space?
Looking at Earth,
a blue jewel surrounded by inky blackness,
Pure Occipital Ecstasy.
Unconstrained by your girth,
you fly with vestigial wings.
The atmosphere on edge,
iridescent blue with no earthly parallel,
Electrifying Diaphanous Beauty.
Guarded by Sirens of Space,
singing saccharine songs,
beckoning you to crash on the atmos-reef
which tears you limb from limb
andscorching what remains
into cosmic croutons that sprinkle onto
the garden salad of Earth.
One last feast out the window,
A looking glass of Wonderland.
Offering both a portal to see your world,
and a translucent reflection to see yourself.
Contemplation;
what is your place in this worldbelow,
how do you change it,
how does it change you.
We are wedded to this planet,
until mass extinction we do part.
Perhaps one planet is not enough.
You study your charts,
we prepare our spaceship,
and our minds.
We make ready our descent,
into these seemingly gentle arms.
The eager anticipation of hugging your wife,
your boys with grins followed by pouting faces,
both excited to see you but not understanding why you left.
Oh how does one spend your last day in Space.
What would you do?

Don Pettit
Node 2, Deck 5
ISS, LEO 51.603

 

Originally blogged at https://blogs.nasa.gov/letters/2012/06/

don petit

LUNA BECKONS

an old writer and his words

The perigee moon
hangs heavily over the city,
clinging to the horizon
as though it wishes to flee
deep into the night,
turning away the attention
in inevitably draws.
We are pulled toward it
by some deeply felt force
that we know we dare not
question, for we must
honor the moon’s secrets
as we hope she will honor ours.

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OUT

A poem that uses mathematics to its own end….

best poetry blog in the cosmos

I drift across the galaxy
seriously slowly

sometimes I am geometry
other times algebraic
formulae or
numerical code

sinking into shape as
gravity decides me

I aim for you who
are my
solution fleshed
out.

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Victorian Scientists writing poetry

Back in 2011, New Scientist magazine produced an excellent article on poetry written by Victorian scientists, including the great James Clark Maxwell. In 1865 he demonstrated that electric and magnetic fields travel through space as waves moving at the speed of light.

https://www.newscientist.com/article/1966743-rhyme-and-reason-the-victorian-poet-scientists/

The poems the article mentions are collected  here:

https://www.newscientist.com/round-up/poetry/

They are quite serious in the main, and sometimes written to catch the reader out. But this one is simply fun, a physics parody of the great Rabbie Burns:

Rigid Body Sings

Gin a body meet a body
Flyin’ through the air.
Gin a body hit a body,
Will it fly? And where?
Ilka impact has its measure,
Ne’er a ane hae I,
Yet a’ the lads they measure me,
Or, at least, they try.

Gin a body meet a body
Altogether free,
How they travel afterwards
We do not always see.
Ilka problem has its method
By analytics high;
For me, I ken na ane o’ them,
But what the waur am I?

 

 

 

Chandrasekhar Limit

Perhaps I shine brightest now,
but my energy has changed;
what I know is difficult to know
in simple space and time;
passion is a system dying,
if not making new.

Precious is a luxury,
a jewel with maintenance.

I am a white dwarf, long in the truth
of life and death, weighted with mission
that follows me like a shadow,
a penumbra I must now leave behind.

This is the way of creation, nothing
begets nothing. Darkness moves me
into the light.

— Richard Maxson

Poem submitted as part of  community poetry prompts at https://www.tweetspeakpoetry.com/

The Chandrasekhar Limit is now accepted to be approximately 1.4 times the mass of the sun; any white dwarf with less than this mass will stay a white dwarf forever, while a star that exceeds this mass is destined to end its life in that most violent of explosions: a supernova.

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/blogs/physics/2012/01/the-chandrasekhar-limit-the-threshold-that-makes-life-possible/

When Earth Coalesced, Was There Nemesis? Interesting Research Revisited #astronomy #galaxy #stars #poet #poetry #science

Aha! An Astronomy poem….

Kate's Science Fiction, News, and Poetry

Binary stars - inspiration for poets Binary stars are seldom identical

Sol,
A main sequence star
Out in a spiral arm,
Light from your nearest brethren
Falls dimly in your realm.

Bits of rock,
Scraps of gas,
Hydrogen and stone,
Remnants of your origin,
But otherwise
Alone.

It seems that in
Your early phase,
Four billion years ago,
You would have spun a coiling dance
With a twin aglow.

Half such pairs,
Such triples,
More,
Cling and orbit tight,
But others,
Looping, twisting far,
Are lost into the night.

Where does your mate,
Your other half,
reside?
That none can say.
Your splendid self looks down on Earth
The only star
That lights our day.

by Kate Rauner

About 40% of stars have stellar partners, so being alone is not unusual.

Rhyming poems inspired by scienec - at your favorite online store 2nd edition now available! Expanded!

But recent studies indicate that all stars may have been born with companions. Sol may have been paired once, but…

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