Astropoetica: Mapping the Stars through Poetry

Starring the Dream of Horses and Angels

The Horsehead Nebula

Credit: ESO, some rights reserved

In the house of Starlight the clocks run riot
and through the garden wild horses roam.
There are so many foals, they grow like ramblers in their sleep;
and I, too, seek the winding skyways.

I have lit my chandeliers.
Now the hour has come to rise and watch the angels.
Above the Great Bear I count nine feathered wheels;
often my dreams’ raptors chase them.
With dipped beams they lurk on the barn roof
and hum the tunes dripping from the eaves.
A smoke-gray mare comes ambling up from the creek,
and a young foal brings her plumelets.

My thoughts drift fondly across the dial of the clock of stars,
my eyes wander over the shapes of horses and angels.
In one whistling moment I recall the true dream.
She will always be wakeful, whom the stars choose to ride.

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Jane Røken wanted to be an astronomer when she was a wee lassie. Later, she strayed away from this ambition, but still looks up at the stars with rejoiceful awe. Her writings have appeared in Antiphon, Snakeskin, Mobius, Word Gumbo, Shit Creek Review, and several other online magazines. She is Norwegian, lives in Denmark, and likes to think of herself as an internationalist.