Closing In…


Far behind now: blue-white world,

Waterworld, world of feathered clouds and

Oceans deep, steep, snow-capped mountains

And deserts of powdered amber.

Ahead, above, beneath, all around: blackness,

Ebony abyss studded with sequin stars

Bisected by mottled vapour trail – the

Sun-frothed spine of the Milky Way.


A year of nothing. Waiting. Watching

The dark get darker as Earth’s glow

Slowly fades o’er my shoulder.


And then…


Ahead: a glint of gold.

A yellow grain among the dust.


It grows.


A yellow peppercorn now, how bright

It seems against the void.


It grows…


A butterscotch-hued bead now,

Sewn onto the star-embroidered cloak

Of night…


What a sight suddenly! A marble

Now, dipped in caramel

With toffee whirls and honey swirls

Streaked across its face.


I rush on silently, imagining

Stars streaking past in Enterprise style,

Hearing the solar wind howling in my ears

As I close in on –


A tiger-striped ball now, fat with cloud,

Bloated and branded with auburn bands

And strands of coffee-coloured haze

Dotted with cinnamon spots –


And still it grows…



© Stuart Atkinson 2007

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