Michael Case


Venus Rose Smoothly

Bright and in place among the others

I stood on a raised spot part of the darkness

Seeing out towards the concavity of stars

I fixed to a point

I the axis on which the sky tilts

Venus rose smoothly

Not in jerky time lapse fashion

No trailing tail of light

The star moved or the sky did

From the border of ground and sky

Brightest of the night except for the Moon who will allow no rivals

Someone has recorded and predicted ten thousand years of transits

So infrequent but then in pairs

Moving across the face of the sun

Appearing in the shallow half glow

Of the new evening

In the tired pre-dawn

Never in the deep of night

Carved on the face of rocks

Amniotic serpent of phosphorus

Recorded in a surviving codex

Lucifer and the flowering of a pope’s staff

Eastern herald of sacrifice, beauty, ceremony, war and vice.

Aspects of Sky

Rayleigh’s scattering

The faraway blue and the flyer orange

The wide black dome the heavy gray veil

The deepening red dusk and the Klein blue morning

The searing pearl and the reflected sea

The smalt of Egyptian faience

The iron and lead of an approaching storm under the bough of Ygg’s ash

The arched body of Nut and Sterrennacht swirling on canvas

Now the world is vibrating shaky and cinereous

The air clinging and thick soaked with the presence of sweat urine and exhaust

Gravity pulling from the inside

Something powerful at rest

Later the sky is every kind of blue and there is a pulsing silence and watercolor

stillness interrupted by a lone bird in a hurry back to the shelter of the nest.


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