Wednesday, October 10, 2012

for wonder is the chorus that makes us all a choir

Come Picnic on Mars

for Zoë, age 5

On a distant glad November,
when our hearts are running high,
and the dreambats all have vanished
into the limestone of the sky,
why don't we take a fiery stroll
straight up to Mars? Just you and I.

We will pack a mental picnic
for years before we go.
Some will say the sky's the limit,
but we will answer: No,
the mind was made to travel.
So, too, indentured hearts,
and knitted fears unravel
with adventure in the dark.

A world of blues will slowly dwindle,
as Mars glows round the bend;
the differences that blind us
will bind us in the end,
for wonder is the chorus
that makes us all a choir,
and time will not forgive us
if, slug-a-beds, we lie
fat and bored and cranky
in our hammock in the sky.

So, come and take the waters
that jet across the seas
that lie between the planets
we crawl to on metal knees.
Oh! when we arrive, what fancy stuff
we'll see: the swooning sands of Paradise,
dust-devils, a volcanic sea.
Then, when twilight falls, by double moon,
we'll feast on ra-

"Come Picnic on Mars" by Diane Ackerman, from Jaguar of Sweet Laughter.

Read this poem out loud; it's like candy in your mouth.

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