RADIANCE, BY CLIF MASON
During the brightest full moon in 133 years,
the crabapple trees in our yard cast long shadows,
thin as spider legs, on snowy earth,
& our naked eyes could scarcely make out
the huge lunar maria. They were filled
with white light, as if, volcanic, it had flowed up
& burst from lunar mountains, plunging out,
roiling in fire-storm, & lunging into depressions
in driving, irradiant rivers & waves.
We lay on our backs on the snowy driveway
to steady the binoculars, & our eyes smarted,
as if we'd looked straight into the noonday sun
as it touched its torch to a snowbank—
yes, a retina-searing cascade of sparks.
Maria & craters’ names are blessings, charms:
Mare Tranquillitatis, Mare Serenitatis, Tycho.
Snow in the yard burned with moon dazzle,
blazed around us like the light-deluged moon.
Clif Mason lives in Bellevue, Nebraska, with his wife, a visual artist. He is the author of four collections, Knocking the Stars Senseless (Stephen F. Austin State University Press), The Book of Night & Waking (which won the Cathexis Northwest Press Chapbook Prize), Self-portraits in Which I Do Not Appear (Finishing Line Press), and From the Dead Before (Lone Willow Press). His work has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and he has been the recipient of a Fulbright Fellowship to Rwanda, Africa.