A small symbolic light above the planar world,
the curveless planetary horizon
and yapping dogs on the wind,
run I walk I queue I
grow tired, eyes close and flicker,
yet every photon tells a tale
of a restless luminous voyage.
After midnight I wander under
sodium doublet illumination
to the very end of the street.
Your visa, sir. Do you have a visa?
A visa. What visa?
A visa for Nocturnia, the Land of Night.
And where might I apply?
She points beyond the checkpoint,
to the lands I may not visit.
Day by day I think about Nocturnia,
make discrete inquiries
in shrouded alleyways,
on the darker net,
until I meet a mercenary stranger
who offers me a one-night pass
for my collection
of treasured Venus flytraps.
The pass is almost genuine,
I overstamped the date.
But I must warn you, we humans …
He pauses to cough repeatedly;
a swarm of biting insects leaves his mouth.
We humans … cannot linger
in the Land of Night.
The denizens of darkness
are not like us:
they swim in deeper seas,
emit their own peculiar brightness.
You must not overstay your visit.
I don’t ask why.
His lips are tightly pressed together,
as if the unexpected might emerge.
Like a god from long ago,
she looks to the east and looks to the west.
Gaia’s thinking of another day.
She’ll make her mind up soon.
Ghostly pale, luminescent, almost human,
my Nocturnian night with her
has passed too quickly,
a movie rated G.
I don’t want to leave her,
I will stay.
She points to
a flight of fireflies
tiny earth stars
He was human once, he stayed too long.
I run and stumble, fall and run again,
reach the gateway with the swell of rising dawn.
The smiling immigration officer stops me.
Tell me sir, do you have a visa
for Diurnia, the Land of Light?
A line borrowed from Jack Vance’s 1950 classic, The Dying Earth. He borrowed the line from Homer, so it’s third hand; the beautiful Paraty in the state of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
the last days of the moon, detail above.