Watching the Pot

by Mike Allen

Arecibo Observatory

Nagging suspicion makes you check
your scopes and dishes, but all's static,
just static heard through heaven's window.
Every day, you put your ear to the glass,
leave your eager oil-marks on its underside;
still no breath mists the window
from the other side. Yet you can't help
imagining that compound or cat-like
alien eye, leaning down on its stalk
to look around every time you turn away.

First published in Defacing the Moon and Other Poems
Copyright © 2000, DNA Publications

Mike Allen is editor of the poetry journal Mythic Delirium and president of the Science Fiction Poetry Association. He has poetry and fiction, both collaborative and solo, upcoming in Weird Tales, Nebula Awards Showcase, Interzone, H.P. Lovecraft's Magazine of Horror and Asimov's Science Fiction. Asimov's reviewer Paul Di Filippo calls Mike's latest poetry collection, Petting the Time Shark, "an emotional and intellectual roller-coaster ride for the lucky reader."

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Image courtesy of the NAIC - Arecibo Observatory, a facility of the NSF