NASA Scientist

Each night he sleepwalks,
dreams of arranging stars,
craves a conversation with the universe.
His red dwarf alphabet
blinks a primordial desire to discover
a space syntax
to connect far flung molecules of life.

As he walks, he watches the sky
for a cosmic letter addressed to him
in the trail of an asteroid’s blood lines,
a comet’s flare, or bubbles from fossilized orbits.
Lover of dark spaces, he would turn off the moon,
glare that outshines the galaxies’ faint signs.

But at breakfast,
his memory is a black hole. Caffeine-stuttered,
sun-stunned awake, exhausted as meteorite ash,
he stares at his alphabet cereal
and wonders,
why it keeps spelling something cryptic
in the open mouth of milk.

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About the Author

Carolyn Dahl is the 2020 winner of the Poetry of the Plains and Prairies chapbook contest for A Muddy Kind of Love, which will be published by North Dakota State University. Her 2019 chapbook, Art Preserves What Can’t Be Saved, was a first place winner in the National Federation of Press Women’s Communication contest, the Press Women of Texas’ contest, and also received an Honorable Mention in the Eric Hoffer Book Awards.

Carolyn Dahl
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