Sculpting the Sky
Gazing above at the heavens we love
is like sculpting the sky with dreams.
What it seems we know fades out in the glow
of myriad stellary gleams.
Stars interwoven with fugues Beethoven
composed in his silence of sound
reverberate through and beyond the blue
as ethereal thoughts abound.
Imaged with luster a huge star cluster
presented of Westerlund Two
is a Hubble gift that gives us a lift
from our everyday earthly view.
In a world prosaic, this mosaic
transports us to realms exotic.
Time loses its track as forward or back
and we soar to heights quixotic.
A tapestry forms mid galactic storms
of sidereal flares to life
with torrents of lights on glittering nights
where pillarous visions are rife.
Great inspirations from the creations
of marvels in measureless skies
spark us to seek past celestial mystique
to infinite wherefores and whys.
While totality of reality
might escape our comprehensions,
they say it’s very extraordinary
to dwell in earthling dimensions.
As with droplets of dew whose hours are few
our death’s not far in the distance.
Thus through the ages the wisest sages
have urged us to prize existence.
To be human born, those illumined warn,
is not to be looked on lightly —
lest we forget, there’ll be seas of regret,
unless it is valued rightly.
Could the vast tableaus the cosmos bestows
awaken us to the rareness
of our precious chance to take a true stance
based on enlightened awareness?
~ Harley White
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Inspiration for the poem came from article ~ Hubble Space Telescope Celebrates 25 Years of Unveiling the Universe,
as well as from the writings of Daishōnin…
“The nebula [Westerlund 2] reveals a fantasy landscape of pillars, ridges, and valleys. The pillars, composed of dense gas and thought to be incubators for new stars, are a few light-years tall and point to the central star cluster. Other dense regions surround the pillars, including reddish-brown filaments of gas and dust… The brilliant stars sculpt the gaseous terrain of the nebula and help create a successive generation of baby stars.”
A star cluster Westerlund 2 in the Milky Way galaxy, with an estimated age of about one or two million years. It contains some of the hottest, brightest, and most massive stars known. The cluster resides inside a stellar breeding ground known as Gum 29, located 20,000 light-years away in the constellation Carina.
Credits: NASA, ESA, the Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA), A. Nota (ESA/STScI), and the Westerlund 2 Science Team
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