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Tony Grist

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Hubble [Feb. 8th, 2005|09:34 am]
Tony Grist
It seems like the Hubble Space telescope is wheeling closer and will soon be caught by gravity and pulled back to earth.

There's not enough money to fix it.

"Oh," I went and "Ah," but then I read how it's no longer the newest piece of kit and there's a telescope in Hawaii that's twice as powerful.

So let's not be sentimental. We'll just be losing the equipment, not the science.

Even so....

Here's a poem I wrote a few years back, when those amazing photographs started coming in. I think I'd just been given a book of them for my birthday.


A tiny point of unfussed space,
Above the north galactic pole,
No stars or anything visible
To your common or garden telescope,
And, look, look, there's galaxies-
Like specks, flecks, sparks, whorls
In a chunk of granite- white ones, blue ones,
Red ones, discs with rims of gold,
Fifteen hundred, all of them billions
Of light years distant.

I'm not yet used
To these big numbers.

Three thousand years
That's all- will carry us back to Homer
Who, thanks to the trick of script,
Gave us our first good look at ourselves.
Wives and old men on the wall
Watch as the young men fight and die
Far off, light flaring from their bronze.

[User Picture]From: jackiejj
2005-02-08 05:23 am (UTC)
Wives and old men on the wall
Watch as the young men fight and die
Far off, light flaring from their bronze.

I caught my breath when reading the last line: light flaring from their bronze. Lovely.

I can't quite believe what I'm seeing from Hubble--those images of distorted elliptical galaxies or stellar nurseries.
My mind can't take them in enough.

But I can understand when that light comes home to us, and I can see it flashing on armor.

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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2005-02-08 06:17 am (UTC)
It seems that Hubble's day is done.

I'm in a poetic mood. A friend read my/you/our Christmas poem and asked me for an Easter poem. I've been writing it this morning. I'll let it settle, then post it.

It's rather a different kettle of fish.
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: jackiejj
2005-02-08 06:40 am (UTC)
An Easter poem would be very fine this morning.

It's raining here, a very mild rain that feels like spring.

And I found this beside the empty house next door:

flowering quince

(Flowering quince and a bed of daffodils)
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2005-02-08 06:57 am (UTC)
Oh gosh yes, daffodils already. Spring is sprung.

So I'll post the Easter poem.
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)