Frame Dragging

November 14, 2016

You never expected the world spin to falter, could never
have predicted the orbit’s reversal, its flattening, a rich orb of clay

easily crushed between the knuckles of some bored and
petulant child. It is an unprecedented cosmic event, months,

maybe years, in the making, the leveled Earth wobbling,
sinking into a velveteen tsunami of constellations and darkest

oblivion. We spin faster, reckless abandon, a whirling
dervish pirouetting on a single point, arms open, then closed

to manipulate drag, gaining mass through acceleration,
the gravity of the galaxy rippling uneasily in the wake of

our world’s unraveling. And all the while, the swelling
moon, ripening, opalescent, pock-marked and perfect, the

closest it’s been in sixty-eight years, last seen when
American troops desegregated, when we were united, at least,

in name, in death. An entire lifetime ago. With your
entire universe precessing, you look to the advancing stars

for answers, you can only trace elliptical patterns with
squinted eye and the tip of your crooked pinky. It’s been

less than a week since the collision course was set
and we’re torn apart once again, half of us relishing the

Earth-centric shift of thinking, the other terrified
by history, parroting itself yet again. What can we do?

Talking about our doom does nothing but fill the air
with a buzzing despair. Instead, we must turn to the

burgeoning moon, study its imperfect, ochre visage
together, a shared resource for humanity, scanning

the deepest recesses of craters for the footprints of
Armstrong & Aldrin, relics from a time lost, foreign, yet

familiar as the buzzing air we breathe, our vantage
granting front row tickets to the beauty of our own destruction.