Sunday, June 14, 2009


When the sky began to fall,
some fell on their knees,
seeking forgiveness from their gods,
from their neighbors, from themselves.

Some cried out in despair,
covering their heads and running
to hide in caves or cellars,
while others welcomed the end of days

and the paradise promised them
in the days of their fathers' fathers' fathers
and their father's fathers before them.
Or so they had been told.

This was Chicken Little's fault,
said one, and the liberal media;
those are but acorns, albeit
large and blue and white,

and the sky will not, can not,
truly fall on we who trust
in God and country. Perhaps,
though, on the rest of you.

And then there were those
who looked about for long sticks
to prop it up, but it was crumbling
too quickly and one piece would fall

while they pushed another back
into place, and the stars and moon
rolled down through the holes
like marbles in a pin-ball machine.

It is no use, no use at all,
they agreed. We need longer
sticks, more sticks, and then
the sky would not, could not

truly fall on we who trust
in science and technology.
When the sky began to fall,
the philosophers, the theologians,

all turned poet and sang to it;
they took up brush, daubing pigment
in mad hope of catching its essence,
keeping the broken sky whole.

Who will look upon their paintings
and say That was Earth, wasn't it?
Who will read and remember
what we have written of this day

when the sky began to fall?

Stephen Brooke ©2009

Of course, a metaphor -- our skies are always falling and we do our best to preserve them before they are around our ankles.

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