Sometimes at night, I sit out on the porch.
If there’s rain, I watch the fat drops
making crystal crowns
at my feet.
If the sky is ebony
and the stars have abandoned the sliver of a moon,
I watch it, marveling at the silver crescent I see
and imagining the rest, hiding in plain sight.
If I’m lucky,
the Constellations come out to play.
I squint at the sky
finding the ones my mother taught me.
The Dipper, just like the blue speckled one that hung
in my grandma’s kitchen.
We lifted it from the nail on the wall and drank deeply,
never worrying about who had a cold or who’d
washed their hands.
Only that we returned it to its rightful place.
There’s Orion the Hunter, his belt buckled tight,
his bow at the ready,
relentlessly stalking the Pleiades,
those seven beauties leaping across the heavens
ever out of his grasp.
Keep dancing, girls. He’s no match for you.
It’s late but I stay, pulling my bathrobe closer.
Then I see her: Venus.
Not just a star, but a planet in her own right.
The only one named for a woman
and what a woman at that!
the color of burnished coals.
Damn, isn’t she something?
Look! my mother would say.
Isn’t it a wonder?
All that going on up there
while we’re way down here?
Yes, I say to the sky. Yes and yes.
Susan Frederick is a third generation Washington native and a UW graduate.
SHARING STORIES is a weekly column for and about the 50 plus crowd living in the Puget Sound region. Send your stories and photos to email@example.com. Tell local or personal stories; discuss concerns around aging and other issues; share solutions, good luck, and reasons to celebrate; poems are fine too. Pieces may be edited or excerpted. We reserve the right to select among pieces. Photos are always a plus and a one-sentence bio is requested (where you live, maybe age or career, retired status, etc.).
SHARING STORIES is featured on www.northwestprimetime.com, the website for Northwest Prime Time, a monthly publication for baby boomers, seniors, retirees, and those contemplating retirement. The newspaper can be found in the greater Seattle area and other Puget Sound locations. For more information, call 206-824-8600 or visit www.northwestprimetime.com. To find other SHARING STORIES articles on this website type "sharing stories" in the search function above.