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 There, a little right
of Ursus Major, is
the Milky Way:
a man can point it out,
the biggest billionfold of all
predicaments he's in:
his planet's street address.
What gives? What looks a stripe a hundred million miles away from here is where we live.
* Let's keep it clear.
The Northern Lights are not the North Star.
Being but a blur, they cannot reassure us.
They keep moving - I think far too easily.
September spills some glimmers of the boreals to come: they're modest pools of horizontal haze, where later they'll appear as foldings in the vertical, a work of curtains, throbbing dim or bright.
(One wonders at one's eyes.
) The very sight will angle off in glances or in shoots of something brilliant, something bigger than we know, its hints uncatchable in shifts of mind .
So there it is again, the mind, with its old bluster, its self-centered question: what is dimming, what is bright? The spirit sinks and swells, which cannot tell itself from any little luster.

by Heather McHugh
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