fallen upon

We do not, perhaps, expect the very sky
To descend upon us, all chunks and wedges
As it did upon the simple, deluded chick
Of the nursery rhyme of long ago
(A child’s verse, perhaps, but promulgated and purveyed
By those older, perhaps wiser, yet still wholly unable
To shake the terror of the meteorological and inexplicable.)
We have, as we have aged,
Eschewed the black-and-white of childhood cosmology
In order to make our gray-tinged bargain with the heavens,
Asking not for its benediction,
But content ourselves with negotiating
For a lack of outright malevolence,
And though our rationality tells us
It cannot come down on us chock-a-block and helter-skelter,
We nonetheless study the sky with wariness
Poorly cloaked as studious indifference.


8 thoughts on “fallen upon

  1. As usual, I am insecurely assessing the meaning of this poem. Too much literary analysis over too many years. Now I know how my students might have felt.
    The line “…in order to make our grey-tinged bargain with the heavens…” makes me wonder if there is a spiritual question being asked in this poem and yet, I do not see a question mark.

  2. Redeemed

    When I upon the farthest reaches muse,
    Where sky and sea now merge as one on one,
    Or seem to an unfettered mind to fuse:
    For thus from daily toil may rest the Sun,
    (Maybe this child in me rejects the wise,
    A jaded elder who first seeks to fright
    Then says I should not just believe my eyes
    Or claims the Sun, through darkness, shines at night)
    With age I wrack in doubt and learn the spin
    Of distant worlds, that Earth is but a world.
    ‘Tis I who move and not the Sun wherein
    A furnace burns: the truth’s at last unfurled –
    Divine benevolence protects us all
    With wondrous beauty so the sky won’t fall.

      1. 0n the contrary. I am not a poet.

        Yours is the poetry and the insight. I just latch on and echo you in a mechanical sort of way.

        I am humbled by your response and your gentle, self-effacing encouragement. Thank you, sir.

  3. the screen seems to have replaced the sky, but then again, is there that big of a difference in walking around lost in your own thoughts or being a screen zombie?

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