The Evolution of Stardust

by Carolin Messier

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Like a pebble in a pond
first ripples
and then nothing
was how you saw your place
in the universe
which in a purely rational
scientific sense
is true, I’m sure
in this unending vastness
this infinite darkness
that continues beyond
the ability of the mind to imagine
in which tremendous burning masses of light
fail to illuminate and warm
the spaces in between—
a single human life is insignificant.

But within this unending vastness
there are swirling galaxies of wonder
full of stars whose radiance
holds planets from spinning into isolation
and on one of these planets
you were born
of stardust and love and the continuity of existence.

You became for me
the sun around which
this earthly woman found her orbit,
the sun whose rays
prompted the blossoming of this yearning bud
to an open-heartedness
finally able to receive,
not simply to love, but to feel loved
not simply to see, but be feel seen
not simply to listen, but to feel heard
not simply to accept, but to feel accepted.

And even as it has been 365 days, one earthly year,
since the sun that was you
imploded in an instant
this openness of heart cannot be closed
this love unfelt
this learning unlearned,
you have left far more than ripples in a pond
all of which will continue for eternity.

Where there was the reassurance of gravity
the balance to my body’s inertia,
there are now only questions
and loss and boundless space,
it would seem there was nothing
to hold my spinning form
from flying to the edge of the universe.

But instead of careening to the edge of nothingness
I am saved by science
whose law of conservation of energy
has transformed your breathing form
of beating heart and electrical impulse
into the bits of stardust and pure love
as a living embrace
which now orbit my earthly form
being reborn a sun
on this unending continuity of existence
as it simultaneously races onward
and is frozen in the moment of our final kiss.