Shambling through sand in Patagonia
and Columbia wear, we queue up for
a rare chance to be wowed. The Sky
News guy twiddles the azimuth knob,
lures us with the roulette of glimpsing
a Venusian ring of light or black drop
for which we’ll each steal a few extra
seconds by playing dumb at the eyepiece,
then circle back to the end of the line again.
We watch the shot sun without looking at it
just as we can watch without looking at our
backlit children, hunched over the shore.
We call them repeatedly to a turn at the scope
but they hunker at the lake’s wet lip, Mylar
glasses flung, because they can catch it
next century, something like water already
trickling quickly from the pebbles and
shells in their hands.
This appeared in the April 2013 issue.
Susan Holbrook teaches literature and creative writing at the University of Windsor.