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The Astronaut

                                    Alan Michael Parker

Belief requires lack of proof:
I think there will be stars because

they’re gone. Now you.
Now that you’ve gone

to prove again what absence takes
(the planetary heart, the stars)

I know belief as true. Thank you.
Blank verse. That’s what the sky

is made of: stars unrhymed,
imagined lines, disordered,

from satellite to moonshot,
wrought down here, by hand.

A line that stops—from me to you.
I know the stars, or one:

I know just how to spin within a hole
until the sun comes up.

Belief the planet turns requires proof:
absence, sense, a place

I’ll never see, payloads
rocketed into the sky.

Belief will end. Stop. Stop.
It ends—if you are gone.

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