Lately, you’ve been scouring the dark
using your eyes like the nimble paws
of some Egyptian-cat-goddess-in-residence
clawing a clutch of stars from the sky
hiding them under a Persian carpet
someplace south of Lansing or Blue Island
someplace where the liquor’s cheaper
and the bars still let you smoke.
You’ve temporarily replaced the constellations
with plasma sparks and rail dust but
the ghosts of those ancient Greek goat-fuckers
are going to be pissed
when they can’t spy Aries or Orion’s Belt tonight.
You say you’re just cleaning up around here.
Well, that’s ambitious, but I can still find grit
out among the gaseous nebula.
You say you’re going to re-name the heavenly bodies
before putting them back, one by one.
Well, maybe you could call the North Star Plath
or Whitman, but before re-inventing the villanelle
why not listen to the voices of readers and writers
not to be born for a hundred more years, asking
(Publsihed in Arsenic Lobster)