pictures I took from space by Carrie Nassif

i. the midwife

here is that distant moon here are its scaly scabs it has been battered it has like all of us a song
a sonorous wheeze of hisses and harps of lilting pitches a swooping reach through black space

regenerative and destructive and braking and accelerating all at once
this her singing chanting lifting opening spreading melding welding melting

and surely it is a living air inhaled and exhaled through her porous stone
her song it has sympathetic strings a vibrating a chorus of young voices

of spiraling swirling exchanges of force as we pass
with overheard words that will never be spoken
ii. the complex

this one is the orange clattering jangle of crowds heard muffled
from the window above with swooping with storming clouds

and then it is the slow sweeping stillness at end of market
it is the call from a real horn it even bleats like the animal it was sawn from

with its reverberating pulsing its wobbles of indecision this cruxing doubt
it is the humming judgment of all that we resonate of all we attune to

this is all this noise these dopplering distances they span the vast the icy
the existential ruse of isolation no empty spaces and so many voices within
iii. the hunted becomes the hunter

here is one this is us we are transmitted like a NASCAR race
a roaring a circular a monotonous a powerful
an indecisive toddler with the volume back and forth
iv. the fisher

a static
a humming
a teapot whistle
a slicing
a shopping cart wheel
a buzzing
a gasp
v. the darkness

here let me point it out to you the tremulous and fading
the what began so shrill this open beak cry calling across

a humid a low sky a
sound-stage-enhanced rainforest

the frog warbling the cicada ratchetting
it is everything vibrating

it is all ricochet over a swampy
over a water rippled soundboard

this bird pleads again this bird pleads again this bird
pleads again for the other to respond
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vi. the lightening flash

you cannot see it but this

is a singular ocean wave
a boiling tsunami-maker
cresting and fractalating


this is a lone plane flying overhead and
into a deep well the resounding the nothing
into the sea into itself
vii. the lost Pleiad

but here

this is a piccolo humming
it is a kazoo made from the susurrating backs of insect wings

this is a heartbeat

the sound a perpetual boomerang returning and departing
hidden in a seashell wish a headache throb a message microscoped in tears

the giddy rush of room to grow from tending inner space
note. These poems were inspired by the sounds recorded in space from NASA satellites. Each section is an allusion to one of the Pleiades, the seven sisters of Greek mythology memorialized in a constellation.
Carrie Nassif is a poet, photographer and clinical psychologist living in the rural Midwest with her wife, children, and assorted critters. She’s had poetry accepted in Pomona Valley Review, Word Peace, typoetic, Yellow Chair Review and in The Gravity of The Thing.