Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Station Seven

There is no ballet on the moon.

There is the LUN-ORE base,

The appalling bolted orange chairs in the lunch room,

And the corporate mission.

The employees bicker, complain of minor ailments, and sometimes sleep together,

But their hearts have become like empty plastic bottles,

On their sides,


They contain no ships, but their dreams do,

Sinking in the ether.

Some of the craters make natural theaters,

But they lie white and vacant,

Like dead faces,

Beneath the blue-in-black of earth rise.

One of the floor workers wanders outside,

Past the caution signs and air locks.

She is like a split seed,

Sending a yellow-green shoot out through the blind dark.

She unscrews her helmet,

Shakes out her hair.

The environment here is too thin to live in--

Her skin tingles.

Her heart constricts.

It is like a first kiss.

There is no ballet on the moon,

But there is someone,

Someone out there,

Dancing in the dust.

In this place, there is no real joy, no satisfying connection, just shifts beginning and ending,

Skin going pale,

Vending machines being brought in on transports.

For a moment,

Work is abandoned--

Everyone is looking out through the double windows.

"Look at her," they whisper to each other, fingers splayed at perfect intervals in front of them.

Outside, the woman knows she is beyond the gray border of good sense,

That she is doomed,

But she has her audience at last.

She is beautiful,

She is art,

And rips through them instantly and irreparably

Like a harpoon

Or a gunshot.



HermanTurnip said...

I'm hoping you've seen the movie "Moon" with Sam Rockwell. If not, I hope you do yourself a favor and check it out. Sure, it doesn't have a fancy lunchroom, but it does have a hidden surprise or two... :-)

Sioux said...

I'm still wonderin'...Are you sure your mama didn't have an affair with Isaac Asimov?

The image of a split seed...the blind dark--so perfect and at the same time, so unique.

My sense of rhythm might be so off (actually, when it's said, "White people can't/shouldn't dance," they have watched ME) but my mind keeps wanting another line after the vending machine line. A short one, but a line nonetheless.

But probably I am wrong. Your spirits NEVER have an off day or make a mistake...

As usual, you put twisted, rich images in my head.

hedgewitch said...

You are on a sci-fi roll, and it just keeps getting better. Out there where the air is thin and the gravity is a joke is where the very best dancing is, I've heard. Few have the courage to take off their helmets and go for it though--the pay is so bad and the benefits--well, fine if you have no dependents maybe. But the boss is supposed to be cool..

Beautiful imagery and I like the way the lines pile up in uneven blocks, tiptoe, then cascade on, like the movements of a dance, or, at the end, like a bright straight shaft that carries the full weight of the piece with precision.

Sherry Blue Sky said...

This poem is incredible. And has so much in it to ponder that I am going to come back and read it again in the morning.Your writing is a continual amazement. I love the comment about your mom and Isaac Asimov - too funny. But that would explain it:)

ileana said...

Thank you for the bedtime poem. Even if she is doomed, she is beautiful, she is art, she has an audience.

Sweet dreams, amiguita!

Sioux said...

Actually, I think Kurt Vonnegut and Isaac Asimov had a child (your mother) and you got a bit from both grand-dads...

Check out your family tree! 'Tis true!

Brian Miller said...

so was she dancing like Michael Jackson?

in all seriousness, i hope my death is as beautiful...

Sherry Blue Sky said...

I love "their hearts have become like empty plastic bottles". WOW! Love the cosmic dancer. Fantastic writing, Shay!

ellen abbott said...

for some reason this reminds me of an aesop fable The Camel Dances.

Raven said...

Love it! The last few lines are particularly powerful. Thank you, as always, for sharing your awesome talent with us.

Daryl said...

WOW .. and it made my mind wander to several books .. wander in a good way as in I gotta tell Shay about this or that .. but first I must read this again and again ...

Mama Zen said...

"Beyond the gray border of good sense."

We should all be so lucky.

Anonymous said...

"Her skin tingles.

Her heart constricts.

It is like a first kiss."

Love this! you do have a way with sci-fi, but then you have a way with everything you write. the Shay way. {smile} ♥