Until Next Night

Crash me, hammer
to iron, my love, you rip me
in the tide, we rose up like plankton
in our floating caskets, set off to the moonlight.
The spaces, we battled, red in tooth and
claw, the water fowl falling
from the stars.

I saw Altair
with a scroll under her wing, and she
told Jupiter of our evil doings, your legs
by my legs, your hair
by my hair, your throat
by my throat, I must say I don’t care
what or who finds
our angry letters, our coats we left hanging,
shoes by the door, and
was it not I, who showed you the night?

Young we still are, but not for too long,
oh no never for long, the slink
of time, hear it click and slide, the ground
pushed high and formed mountains,
the trees once saplings now strong but
that was then, all over, it will end
so let’s choke on each others tongues;
I have a poem
I wrote you one evening,
it goes

Damsel, come meet me,
when the magpies congregate on the 7th moon
in the 7th night, cross with me
the Magpies’ Bridge and we will promenade
about their black heads
until they are bald, and when day is over,
we two lovers sad depart, I’ll think of you
and count the moons
until next night, when magpies fly.


This piece was inspired by the many myths and legends surrounding the constellation Aquila, the Eagle. The Latin word, aquila, is believed to mean ‘water colored bird’ and is related to Latin, aqua, meaning water. The last lines of the poem are in reference to the Korean tale of the lovers Cowherd and Spinster. Separated in the sky by an angry father-in-law, on the 7th moon on the 7th night the two use a bridge of fluttering magpies to meet, departing each other at dawn. In the sky this union is represented by the constellations Aquila (Cowherd, the Prince), Lyre (in China, the Spinning Damsel, or in the Korean tale as the Spinster, the Bride), and Antinous (the crossing), a now discarded constellation. Aquila sits westward from the Dolphin, pointing his beak east. 

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