It’s pretty rare to write a poem with a specific theme in mind before you begin. It’s usually easier to start with a line or a phrase which a certain rhythm. However, there are those rare instances when you get lucky.
I’d always wanted to tackle the topic of divorce, but couldn’t find a way into the theme directly. The metaphor came to me one night as I was walking and looking at a quarter moon. A few days later, I wrote this poem called “Divorce of Gravity.”
The Divorce of Gravity
Her parents took a quarter of the moon.
She remembered them as thieves
when she was only seven.
They masked themselves with crescent smiles
and left her waning in the sky.
Each night she made up her own stories
out of the tapestries of constellations.
They were true in another galaxy.
The stars stayed clustered together
the same for centuries.
During the day she was invisible.
Her parents kept their love somewhere
in another hemisphere.
She watched them turn the sun
on each other until they scarred.
How deep the burns, she never knew.
She only had those nights when she lit the world.
They looked back at her as satellites
unguarded in their gravity,
pulled toward each other in the dark.
Note: Poem first published in The Magnolia Review in 2016.