By John C. Mannone
We stood alone at the precipice,
its edge cutting the near darkness,
moon glinting hints of silver
on tarnished leaves of the empty forest
below. And the stars glimmered.
We watched them night after night
until they disappeared behind the lightwashed
skies, caravanning across
the desert space—sand, asphalt black.
Shiny clusters here and there: phantasms
of all the wild creatures we imagined.
And they could see us, too. One night,
the black oozed like wet tar in the heat
of the night. The stars dripped
their glossy oils and glittered earth.
The hot stars danced into the night
entwining each other as if threads
spooling filaments of light. Knitting
tissue, sinew to bone. Warping skin
over framed hearts. They fashioned
themselves. And when they were done,
looked back to the empty heavens, then
pawed, hoofed, slithered and crawled
to place their shimmers of magic back
to constellation the ancient sky.
It was pleasing. My wife asked me,
What will you call them, Adam?
John C. Mannone, nominated three times for the Pushcart, has current and forthcoming work in The Baltimore Review, Pirene’s Fountain, Linden Avenue Literary Journal,
Ayris, Prairie Wolf Press Review, Tipton Poetry Journal, Pedestal, Rose Red Review and others. He’s the 2013 Rhysling Chair, the poetry editor for Silver Blade, an adjunct professor of physics, and a NASA/JPL Solar System Ambassador. Visit The Art of Poetry at jcmannone.wordpress.com.