Poem:Photo - The Star Strewn Sky

Monday, February 26, 2024

Stars. Photo by Carl Dinse

The Star Strewn Sky

I miss the stars. I miss The Big Dipper, The Little Dipper,
The North Star. All easy to identify.
But most of all I miss Orion.
It was always the first constellation I saw when I looked up
And the last to diminish towards dawn.

Orion used to watch over me on my way home after night meetings.
I’d look out the car window and look up and there he’d be
Tipped a little sideways as always.

I don’t know, but I wonder
If Dad didn’t write us from the wartime South Pacific, and say,
“When you’re lonesome, just look up at Orion the warrior.
I’ll be doing the same from here under
And we’ll meet over the wash grey blue.
I’ll watch out for you.”

Have you ever looked up at the stars and lost your stress?
Perhaps in the wilderness or from a mountain’s height?
I don’t see stars anymore coming home from meetings
Or looking up from my yard, even the planets are gone.
Sightings have gradually diminished into nothingness.

Have you ever seen the star-studded big sky in Montana?
Stopped and then turned off the headlights?
Another brightness appears above.
From a country road’s blackness a star-encrusted panorama,
A mess of brilliant scattered diamonds
Thick and shimmering in the great overhead.
“Look at us! Look at us! We’re here!” they seemed to say.

How can stars be millions, billions, trillions of light years away
Yet feel so intimate?

Vicki Westberg Feb. 12, 2024


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