At the galaxy’s edge float stars no eyes will ever see.
You set them out thoughtfully like candles
in a bedroom, or lanterns on a river.
Some say you care for none of them
that you scattered them on a whim
forgetting all but the brightest
then one day even those.
What if they knew your delicate precision
how your heart ached to let each one go
how every orb was a part of you, shining?
You have named them all
to keep diaries of their travels
their ancient orbits and clusters
who spin in glowing whirlpools for eons.
All your stellar children, the solar seeds you planted
who carve their initials in gravity and burn
for your pleasure, someday they will all be grown.
This poem appears in the collection Inner Planets: 50 Poems by Matthew Howard. Available in paperback, Kindle, and audiobook.