The Silent Enemies


This thing of shapes cylindrical,

Orthogonal and technical

That floats in orbital ellipse

High above the solid Earth

Provides a living space for man,

A silver footprint stamped into emptiness.

Its blue petals stare at the Sun’s eye

To interpret glare into electricity.

To spin the motors, clean the air

Keep the place alive.

Within, the astronauts,

Designed for up and down

Revolve and flounder,

Their architecture confounded

For lack of gravity’s commands.

Their confused bones tend to disintegrate,

Undemanded muscles lose purpose

Their entire structure cries out

To battle surface forces, push against solidity

To lean against the wind, shoulder aside

The snow, the hail, the rain.

Beyond the metal membrane

Vacuum crouches in anticipation

To toy with these invaders,

Spout out their blood in fountains

Send them back down

In sparking parabolas.





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