Artist's conception of a Jupiter-sized planet heating up parent star HD 179949

The return address I know
my whole life: my home.
Opening the envelope,
a clipping slips out.
HD 179949, I read.
Artist's rendition, bright yellow,
shows two globes, close.
Equally yellow, a highlighted title:
“Irritating Planet/Heats up Parent Star”
Bittersweet smiling, I find
my own highlighter to yellow
“…due to fierce magnetic attraction.”
Love you too, mom.

Copyright © 2006, Greg Beatty

Image Credit: Shane Erno/UBC - NRC Canada

Greg Beatty is recently married. He and his wife live in Bellingham Washington. Greg has a BA from University of Washington and a PhD from the University of Iowa, both in English, and attended Clarion West 2000. Greg's work has appeared in 3SF, Absolute Magnitude, Abyss & Apex, Andromeda Spaceways Inflight Magazine, Asimov's, Fortean Bureau, HP Lovecraft’s Magazine of Horror, the Internet Review of Science Fiction, Ideomancer, Oceans of the Mind, Paradox, SCI FICTION, Shadowed Realms, Strange Horizons, Star*Line, and The New York Review of Science Fiction, among other venues. Greg won the Rhysling Award in 2005 (short poem category).