Cassiopeia

Louis Faber

Cassiopeia

 

You sit on your self-made throne
and stare at the night sky
as clouds gather
and dissipate beneath you.

Do you even recall
why you were cast out,
condemned to your cell so vast
yet infinitely confining?

Does your body remember
the touch of his hand
the crude hunter
who set you aflame

with a white heat
that paled the sun of summer?
What do you imagine
as tongues of the Perseids

lick across the sky
and disappear into
the ebony holes that lurk
in the corners of your eyes?

You move slowly across my world
and only the dawn brings you peace.

________________

Author’s Comments: As the father of a (now) astrophysicist, I spent many hours with my son staring through an eyepiece (or actually aiming the telescope for him) at the night sky. The constellations fascinated me, more for trying to grasp why earthbound people made the celestial choices they did. And, why when it came to Gods and Titans, the sky was intended to be a prison, where you served your sentence into eternity (ours, if not theirs). More recently I have been deeply troubled by the use of imprisonment in so many areas, and in the destruction of families and relationships. Cassiopeia seemed a good, if distant metaphor for that issue.  The poem, as many of mine do, evolved in the writing, as Cassiopeia took a human form in my mind, as did Orion, and in the poem morphed into an unrequited, or eternally requited love story. (That needs some editing to be sure).

Louis Faber has work in The Poet (UK), Dreich (Scotland), The Alchemy Spoon (UK), Atlanta Review, Arena Magazine (Australia), Exquisite Corpse, Rattle, Eureka Literary Magazine, Borderlands: The Texas Poetry Review, Midnight Mind, Pearl, Midstream, European Judaism, Greens Magazine, Afterthoughts, The South Carolina Review, and Worcester Review, among many others; he has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize.

Editor’s Notes: The supporting image: Metamorphoses of Ovide (the king of Greece, Céphée, and the queen, Cassiopé, thank the hero Perseus for having delivered their daughter Andromeda, offered in sacrifice to a marine monster) by Pierre Mignard (1679) at Louvre Museum, Paris https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cepheus_(father_of_Andromeda)

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