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Meteor Shower in Rural New Hampshire
Barbara Quick


A denser brew of darkness as we walk,
blindly, down the pathway into night.
Heads craned back, we fill our eyes
with stars that start to fall from blackest skies,
moments too brief to register as real
and yet they pierce the heart
like all the greatest works of art.
Each glittering trail of light festoons the night
and feeds an appetite for more.

And more stars fall and, sore of neck,
we lay ourselves upon the ground
to contemplate the burning space debris
more comfortably.
Our still-warm selves the topmost skin
of all the layers of all that lived and now decays:
The future home of all we are and all we dream
in gleaming transit through the dark.
The earth that will replace our breath
and know the final number of our days.


© by Barbara Quick.
Used with the author’s permission.






Barbara Quick is a novelist, journalist and poet. The author of seven books, her newly assembled poetry collection, Fanny Mendelssohn Catches a Glimpse of the Future, was a semi-finalist for this year's Washington Prize and her novel, Vivaldi's Virgins (HarperCollins, 2007), has been translated into 15 languages. Barbara lives on a small farm in Sonoma County, California with her husband, a vigneron and violist for the San Francisco Symphony. An avid dancer, runner and student of yoga, Barbara divides her time between writing and tending to her edible gardens. Learn more about her at




Post New Comment:
catharine lucas:
love this poem, Barbara - just the right combo of stiff necks and celestial inspiration -- up in the sky and down to earth for "our final days" -- a gift!
Posted 10/26/2016 02:19 AM
Beautiful rhythm and perfectly-chosen words. You can tell a lot of time was taken in composing this meaningful poem!
Posted 10/22/2016 09:26 PM
Kathleen Carlson:
Beautiful poem. I especially like poetry that quietly, cunningly pulls the reader into the poet's mindset. We are surprised to find that we are there.
Posted 10/22/2016 05:11 PM
Larry Schug:
Skillfully written with the turn the poem takes. I especially respond to the final six lines.
Posted 10/21/2016 07:40 AM
Beautifully put! The words (with their internal rhyme)flow naturally and uniquely express a truth. A wonderful poem!
Posted 10/21/2016 06:51 AM
Your bodies the tp[most skin of earth--wonderful!
Posted 10/21/2016 06:43 AM
Stunning! Thanks, Barbara
Posted 10/21/2016 05:59 AM
Wow! Very impressive.
Posted 10/21/2016 04:32 AM

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