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The Star Crusher
Man looks up on the clearest of nights
And gazes upon the darkened sky,
And wonders at distant galaxies,
At nebular clouds and comet-tails.
But most of all, he dreams of stars,
And how he wonders what they are!
I see the stars burning in the night
But no stellar dreams cross my thoughts...
Instead I dream of upending the sky
Shaking out the invaders in my space!
Why are they above and I below?
Who dared to let them rule my sky?
If I could touch them, then I might
Take one down and grip it tight,
Crush it to dust and scatter the bits,
Crush it as small as physics permits!
Yet...try as I might, there is no hope—
As I reach out and grasp in vain,
Stars slip through like grains of sand,
Distant and cold in their lonely space.
Do they see us die, and do they know
That one day they will lose their light,
That every star is bound to collapse,
Succumb to forces beyond its control?
Do they look down upon the Earth
And watch the foxes giving birth,
The termites swarming in their nest,
Birds and beasts settling down to rest,
The humans looking up, who sigh:
“Can I? Can I?”
The stars and I—we're both mortal things,
And when I die, I will go nova too,
And I will live on as scattered dust
That slowly congeals and is born anew.
So once again, when you number the stars,
I will not have died—merely winked at you.