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Arcturus 

by Amy Elliott, Farmington Hills

Arcturus only has half a million years left in our sky before it fades. You
Bay and howl at the puffy light the star
Cast off in 1969.

Deep,you say. You’ve read the first stanza. Orange light
Empties onto your face and you are carved in orange oil. Helium
Fusion in the star’s core has made it swollen, orange and sore.

Giant stars like Arcturus eventually buckle like a
Hungry man might try to eat his own toes, and
Inevitably, Arcturus will smash into its own carbon heart

Just as the hungry man comes to the dilemma of swallowing his own head. You
Keep reading, slinging raw shots, getting splinters. You develop a
Lukewarm sheen on your skin. You missed that word. Really, it’s

Minuscule, the time from the first heave and swirl of Arcturus to its cold blooming
Nebula which will cling all filmy like an
Opera, swampy and broad with a marvelous motherly shelf

Pin-star sharp, marcasite, like a blowfish, a
Queen-sized blistering sapphire dangles at the sternum, then the
Ricochet of somebody’s bullet grazes the

Soprano’s right ear. Don’t do this, you say very seriously but it’s
Too late. We see Arcturus from both sides of the sun and it seems to
Undulate, April to August, in the hollow of your tongue while you sing. In a

Vacuum, sometimes, atoms blip in and out of existence. Some think this is
Where the universe came from, a piece of snow in a vacuum gone
Extraordinarily wrong. That’s a relief, I say, but

You, you’re watching Arcturus like the sky has one eye and you’re sad to see it go
Zillions of years from now,you say, it might as well have not existed.

 

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