Back to Issue Twenty-Four.

when totality occurs



On another exoplanet
would it feel the same
this interval of opacity
and concealment, dip
in temperature, surge
of power as the lights
are triggered by their
sensors, the ones that
say that it is dark out.

What other place in the
heavens can seem so
empty as the one over
which the shadow of the
moon passes. Crickets
startled, bats confused,
the voices of the birds
have been arrested. No
you can’t go out, this is
not a good time, you’ll
get hit by a car without
its headlamps on. The
idiots are still with us.
That’s the bloody terror
of it. For what might they
do to us while the lights
are off and we’re staring
at the sun, rather, staring
at the place it last was seen.
Until it comes again to
shame us with its brilliance.


D. A. Powell‘s books include Repast (Graywolf Press, 2014) and Useless Landscape, or A Guide for Boys (Graywolf Press, 2012), recipient of the National Book Critics Circle Award in Poetry. He lives in San Francisco.

Photo Credit: Matt Valentine.

Next (Triin Paja) >

< Previous (Monica Sok)