In Transit (for Arthur Eddington) by Neil Gaiman

The Universe in Verse: Neil Gaiman reads “In Transit,” his tribute to Arthur Eddington from Maria Popova on Vimeo.

IN TRANSIT (for Arthur Eddington)
by Neil Gaiman


To find the many in the one
he sweated under foreign skies
to see the stars behind the sun.

So space and time were now undone
reality was undisguised.
We found the many in the one.

There is no photograph, not one,
that shows the mind behind the eyes.
He saw the stars behind the sun.

Not with a sword, or knife, or gun,
a simple picture severed ties.
He found the many in the one.

Light bends around us. So we run,
as gravity reclassifies
the stars we saw behind the sun.

To see the world beyond the skies,
to know the mind behind the eyes,
To find the many in the one
he showed us stars behind the sun.


Unfucked, or anyway retiring,
in the awkward sense. Retirement will never be an option.
The gruff gentleman with the cap who understands
what the numbers mean
remembers a bicycle ride when he was younger.

The smoke of the cigarettes he does not smoke kicks at his lungs
mixing with the buzz of the booze he doesn’t ever drink
a convivial pint after the ride into the country gave him such a thirst.
And afterwards they lay on their back in the stubble
staring up at the stars. Together. All the stars

Countable as the words in a Bible,
countable as the hairs on his friend’s head,
all accountable, and that is why they never truly touched.
The shadow of prison or disgrace perhaps moving between them
like the shadow of an eclipse.

And, in another life, at another time,
to see the stars behind the sun,
he takes his photographs
fighting the cloud cover. Becoming
the thing that happened in Principe.
when he proved that the German was right,
that light had weight,
half a year after the Armistice.
A populariser, but not courting popularity.

Somewhen a boy is counting stars.
Somewhen a man is photographing light.
Somewhen his finger strokes the stubble on another’s cheek,
and for a moment everything is relative.


The Walk Home (complete)

Somehow only part of this was posted this morning. Here’s the entire poem. Sorry about that!

Cynical Wordsmith

A young girl walks home
Alone, after midnight.
She stares behind,
Regret mounting,
As the paranoia builds.
She fears the night,
As inevitable as it is.
She fears the possible
And recounts horror stories.

The man in her path
Is a father of three,
He works late to provide.
He loves the night wind
And gazing at the stars.
He is at peace here,
On his nightly starlit walks.
The stillness soothes
A hectic day’s thoughts.

Him looking up,
Her looking back,
The initial contact
And the deafening scream.

Pistols in hand,
And fear pervasive.
Either may decide,
Either will regret.
Would either be wrong
For pulling the trigger?

I honestly don’t know.
I hate to accept it,
But society has instilled
A constant fear
In the populace
And the norms
Are killing more

View original post