Fall 2010 / Issues / Poetry 2010 / Volume 41

Before Venus Rising — Ann Struthers

His little son beside him, the philosophy professor

pulls his big, black pickup over, halloas

at the crazy old poet walking in the twilight.

He is taking the boy beyond the city’s lights

to the country to watch Venus rising.

The old poet trudges along, a fist full of stars in her hand,

stars caught like butterflies

from the deserts at Sharm el-Sheikh,

dipped from the waves of Okoboji,

and those tame ones that alighted unbidden

on her fingers like iridescent hummingbirds.

Now she is almost home.

After dark the boy will return with a planet,

shiny as a new marble, in his pocket.

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