the theatrics of a Full Snow moon, penumbral eclipse
and Comet 45P/Honda-Mrkos-Pajdušáková.
Like spilled salt, walking under a ladder,
opening an umbrella indoors, comets
were once thought a bad omen. In fact,
Pliny the Elder linked the snowy dirtballs
to political unrest and death, catastrophes,
attacks by heavenly beings against terrestrial
inhabitants (like the canon of an old white GOP?),
general harbingers of doom, of world-altering change
No surprise that you return to the dystopian songs
of Margaret Atwood. Hers, the pending visit of a green
comet, its icy body weaving star dust in its coma and tail,
eccentric elliptical orbits, spherical cloud coverage,
an apparition visible to the naked eye, its form pointing
away from the Sun. Sometimes faint and unspectacular;
tonight, masked by cloud and flurry.
Kersten Christianson is a raven-watching, moon-gazing, high school English-teaching Alaskan. When not exploring the summer lands and dark winter of the Yukon Territory, she lives in Sitka, Alaska with her husband and photographer Bruce Christianson, and daughter Rie. She completed her MFA in Creative Writing/Poetry through the University of Alaska Anchorage (2016).