By Camille S. Campbell
My father tinkers with the telescope,
watches the stars as if they move.
He’s precise, adjusting the lens,
trying to filter out the trivial.
As the rest of the world
watches flashes on tv screens,
my father laments:
We’re so inconsequential,
A blink of dust in the cosmos.
I wonder then how my emotions are so real,
Swelling, festering, exploding,
inside of me, a fusion that could form a star.
Why do I care to make a mark on the world,
if it would be lost in space dust?
The stars will remain, as we fade away.
Science tells me I’m a few atoms.
My mind centers me.
I yearn to make the world rotate around me.
I, I, I, I.
I wish I could wrap myself in the night sky,
slurp down starlight and then—
I would laugh up stars,
feel them between my teeth.
Is it selfish to want to reach for the stars?
Could I ever be Universal?
My father’s favorite hobby is astronomy and, after he looks through the telescope, he likes to mention how small we are in such a large universe. In my poem, I wanted to contrast the myriad of emotions a human feels with the vastness of the universe that makes these vivid emotions seem insignificant. In a sense, we all have a craving to be universal, even though we know how enormous the cosmos is.