John Oliver Simon

So happy to be born this morning, mayflies
effusively congregate on moist black earth
recently planted with-not-yet showing beets,
so glad to be alive, flip their wings and soar

through first few centimeters of atmosphere
seeming to blink in and out of existence
across the terminator, sun to shadow
describing many almost random orbits

throughout the garden, where Isabella and I
squabble over which of us points telescope
at the frozen moon, where human beings have walked:

craters, mountains, relics, promises of love
along a trajectory from dawn to dark.
From here on in she gets to aim the dang thing.


John Oliver Simon is Sage on the Stage at California Poets in the Schools. He is a distinguished translator of Latin American poetry, and has written more than 800 unrhymeschemed hendecasyllabic sonnets.

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