Yesterday, I drafted a winter solstice poem and used the scraps for a second poem, the one below. It not only fails the solstice but it does with the conjunction of Saturn and Jupiter what poets do with everything — make it about love. But you already know that’s one of my weakness, and I had lots of fun with these couplets. Like its sister poem* posted yesterday, this draft of a love poem for the conjunction of Saturn and Jupiter feels so anchored to this particular solstice and this particular celestial event that I probably won’t submit it. That frees me up to share it here!
Failing to Write a Solstice Poem, You Insert Yourself In the Conjunction of Saturn and Jupiter
A tongue travels down your spine. A zigzag stitch across each vertebra.
Dark days like these, love may be the only thing holding you together.
You wanted to write a poem for the winter solstice, but here you are. In bed.
Lips on your neck undoing you. Just so. The knitting can start over again.
Or would you say suture, baby. That’s capital k Kink, now, isn’t it.
And you keep the lights on, don’t you. Which is why you’ve already
forgotten about this winter solstice. And its special gift: the conjunction
of Saturn and Jupiter. Two planets close as they’ve been in 800 years.
Close enough to kiss. Close enough to nibble an ear lobe. Close enough
to roll around together on the sky’s black satin. Saturn and Jupiter
close as they’ve been in our view, anyway. How we size them up.
Naked-eye them. Peeping-Tom them. Envy them. Their meeting
making news. Brightest light / darkest night. Hope from the heavens.
Christmas star. Wise Men. O Come All Ye Faithful lovers. Etcetera.
Have you seen a surgeon thread the needle? His hands come together.
Close enough to pray. Close enough. Some may say that’s not prayer
but maybe they’ve never been under the knife. Under the spell.
Death close enough its breath fogs up the glass. That’s how you know
it’s the real thing, love. Hark, Saturn. Hark, Jupiter. The planets aligned.
Say fate stitched us together. Say it’s like we’re one.
*Still cruisin’ toward writing 30 new poems by the end of the year: This one is #22.