moon and stars

He howls as if at the full moon. It hangs in the sky like a weight, presses down on me. I used to be drawn to it, but now I feel only dread and wonder: dread for the seizures that seem to flank its coming; wonder at how it seems to tear and pull things apart then smash them back together. I see the moon in my son’s round face—his glowing complexion, his pools for eyes. I doubt he’s ever seen it himself, always drowning in a drugged-up sleep under its rays, never out at night gazing at the sky so full of stars, but which his weak eyes can’t possibly see.

Stars. What are stars? I cannot explain, cannot point in their direction or cast out a net to catch a falling ember before it expires. No star burns bright enough to inspire him to reach out and touch. Their points of light all dissolve into black, melting into the tops of trees and blanketing a field, a meadow, a sea. Stars mean nothing, reflect nothing, to a boy who cannot see them nor contemplate their mass or the spaces in between, nor know what is it to wish upon one that is falling.

photo by Jeff Berkes

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