Poetry by Kieran Egan

FLICKER

In a dark field 

a winter bonfire

crackles sparks into the sky;

our cosmic bonfire vents/ignites

a scatter of reeling galaxies

flickering on, flickering out.

The seeming succession 

of minutes, millennia, 

the four-billion years 

of Brahma’s Kalpa cycle,

cycles and epicycles, 

whose spokes zip by 

in a zettasecond, 

every thirty trillion years, 

flicker,

flicker.

Sometimes it feels our Kalpa 

is barely underway:

we’re in the first 

flash of a zettasecond;

in a mere millennium 

there will be megacities 

on megaplanets 

in megagalaxies.

Sometimes, near the end:

galaxies flailing apart

at unimaginable speed, 

the most distant invisible, 

unknowable to ours, as ours to them.

We are particles of something

that can neither know itself 

or be known;

each of us 

a floating coral fixing 

to its random necropolis;

billions of years past

billions to come

only this thin moment

infected by us;

ash from our bonfire 

invisible on the dark ground.

Kieran Egan lives in Vancouver. His chapbook ‘Among The Branches‘, was published by Gustav Press. His poetry has appeared in Canada, The US and Ireland. Previous work featured in issue 36 of The Blue Nib.

About the contributor

Related Articles

Poetry by Carolyn Martin

Writing poetry since her twenties, Carolyn’s first project was to rewrite the Bible. ‘My poems attempt to be simple in words as they grapple with the complexity of being on earth right now.’

Poetry by Patricia Davis-Muffett

Three vivid narrative poems from Patricia Davis-Muffett, each of three describing a different experience from the many tragedies of 2020.

A Poem by Stacey Curran

Stacey Curran's poem delicately explores the twin ache of memory and loss.

More Like This

Poetry by Don Krieger

Don Krieger is a 2020 Creative Nonfiction Fellow.
His work has appeared in Neurology, Live Mag!, Seneca Review, The
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, The Asahi Shimbun, Entropy, and others.

‘October’ by Mary Beth Hines

Massachusetts poet Mary Beth Hines.

3 Poems by Michael Igoe

Poems from Michael Igoe that appear to go down easy but challenge you to read again.

Coyote Warning, Poetry by Marybeth Rua-Larsen

Marybeth Rua-Larsen won the Luso-American Fellowship for the DISQUIET International Literary Program in Lisbon