January 29th, 1722
On a carrack nearing Boston Harbor, I gaze
at the moon and agree with most that
life exists there as it does here
on this trodden, soiled world.
In 10th Century Japan, a bamboo cutter first
gazed upon his daughter—Kaguya,
who rose from the stalk a princess
who called her faraway kingdom the moon.
Perhaps if then, we could meet such
wonders on the desolate white waste,
we would intend to conquer.
Is it not improbable?
The Emperor sought Kaguya’s hand
in matrimony, stalking her beauty,
as Orion once set his eyes on virgin Artemis,
until her cosmic ancestors returned.
And if the cosmic pluralists of the Old World
say those farther from the sun’s hellfire
live in salvation, while Mercurians and Venusians,
immobilized by blisters, are but sinful statues,
what then of Princess Kaguya and her subjects?
Shifting in and out of fire, dancing around
our ruthless planet in a manic-
depressive cycle—sin and salvation.
Perhaps we are to enslave and become enslaved.
Perhaps the moon’s children know
of Earthling tendencies,
decided that they were unsafe from our lunacy.
And so, every year, the moon creeps further away from
its blue sister, inching like a frightened child.
When once the moon joined Earth in matrimony,
It presumed us her equal.
As I sail from the Old World, I pray they know
that Our ambition is wide enough to
eclipse the stars until they’re swallowed
in our insatiable shadow.
Spring, 2019 Issue