Tuesday poem: Crying over spilt light

August 3, 2015

Crying over spilt light

About one-fifth of the world’s population can no longer detect the Milky Way with the naked eye due to light pollution. (Reported in Cosmos magazine, August/September 2009.)

Obesity of light blankets black,
clogs the arteries of recognition.
Blindness comes from the stroke
of too easy ignition; the fatty candle
of conjoined cities chokes imagination.
No matter; search the lost skies
by screen’s unblinking gaze,
and rediscover what Neanderthals
once mind-wandered quite for free.
Erasure of night by carrion globe,
pecking out eyes of speculation.

P.S. Cottier


I wrote this one back in 2009, and it was published in The Specusphere. I thought I would republish it as this year is the International Year of Light.

It struck me as ironic that the light we use to free ourselves from darkness in fact blinds us to the stars.

Have other poets have been writing about light?

Read the works of the other Tuesday Poets around the world by pressing here.

4 Responses to “Tuesday poem: Crying over spilt light”

  1. Helen Lowe said

    It “is” as topical now as in 2009, for sure. NZ has a “dark sky reserve” at Lake Tekapo near the Mt John observatory but there is so much development in the area it may be too little, too late.

  2. pscottier said

    Halting development is anathema to Australia’s current government, and, I suspect, that of New Zealand. At least you don’t have State governments though.

    What value the stars?

  3. A great little poem Penelope. Love the title…spilt light…lovely
    The whole star thing. to be honest I couldn’t bear not to see them. What a lot we take for granted.

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