by Peg Duthie
After he confided, I want the sky to line my pockets,
she took up her chisel: the mossbark of midnight
peeled away with just a tug from her fingers,
soon joined by the gray little shavings of twilight
twined with ribbons of horizon. Now and then
she pried at the nailhead of a stubborn star
and her blade sometimes slipped as she struggled to shape
the hostile hematite of the dark before dawn.
When they next lay down in the watery glow
of neither-day-nor-night, she rubbed the sand
of sun-stained stones across the lines of his palm.
Copyright © 2003, Peg Duthie
Caelum, the Chisel
by Nicolas-Louis de Lacaille
Peg Duthie works as a calligrapher in Nashville, Tennessee.
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Image courtesy of Linda Hall Library of Science, Engineering & Technology