Outside, our breath rises, light’s focused
through clear lenses,
the magic of thick, polished glass, of mirrors.

Tonight I see the moons of Jupiter:
four tiny crescents lit by the sun
in line, in orbit, the planet like a star.

Since childhood I’d heard their names
Io, Europa, Ganymede, Callisto…
but I never thought to see our sun’s
bright arc define their surfaces.

Now they are real. I know their solid
weight suspended, sense the easy glide
of partners dancing circles at a distance,
our globe, our moon, huge forces
swinging ellipses, invisible attraction.

Jupiter. I can even see its stripes!

© Steve Walter
Lancaster LitFest 2002
Poems 25 – Literary Oxygen

The Moons of Jupiter