from up here it’s difficult to see what is beneath you

Where the starlight begins by Catrin Welz-Stein

Where the starlight begins by Catrin Welz-Stein

someone switches off the light
&i pull out night-vision glasses,
if it was the moon who lost his gleam
so suddenly, & why

i should be up here anyway,
taking a pack of bulbs out of the drawer,
pin ‘em in the sky, power-plugged
&if i’m lucky they’ll illuminate the night-cold concrete

as i drive her to the airport at 5 in the morn,
“the light’s so bad” she mumbles,
heavy traffic on the autobahn already,
building workers// one-legged traffic lights
exhausted from another night shift, &

i tell her about my car ride to Long Beach,
afraid that i would miss the plane to San Francisco,
tension spreading over every bone,
a thousand detours

at my workplace (need my pin,
all doors still locked–)

i hang the moon above my desk
in the empty office,

&a bead of stars outshines the neon light,
she’ll take off soon,
to Berlin first

then San José,
i type my password on a yawning screen,
purple sky scraps (beautifully textured)

‘round my rolled up sleeves,
& the clacKcLaCk of my keyboard


———–out of balance galaxies


at dVerse today we’re writing to some chosen pieces of artwork by Catrin Welz-Stein– see you at 3pm EST when the doors swing open..


50 responses to “from up here it’s difficult to see what is beneath you

  1. I like the idea of hanging the moon above one’s desk. Oh, that this could be true! I can imagine the drive to Long Beach. California driving is hair raising, to say the least. I enjoyed the visuals in your poem. Plus cool artwork. I chose the same one..smiles.

  2. try as we might we could never fully light the moon…we should keep the light close though so the darkness doesnt overcome our world…i know too that you will miss your little one…but how proud you are of her as well…she is off lighting worlds in her own way as well…

  3. Claudia, you certainly know how to pick them!
    These images are gorgeous. I could write on any of the ones out there. What a treat for the weekend. Thank you.
    BTW, I must write before I read, or I’ll ‘borrow’, without wanting to 🙂

  4. WOW. Claudia, that last line–inspired!
    “..cLaCk of my keyboard
    ——–out of balance galaxies”

    This really a GoooD piece of work. So many “quotable” lines here. I love galaxies where my mind wanders, and you put them right into your office, the moon hanging between and all balanced.

    Screw in the bulbs, and the clouds will disappear, right? I LOVE this piece.

    Could FEEL tension buiding in traffic–with a PLANE TO CATCH, DAMMMIT!
    Thanks, girl…you just keep on and on, doing it!


  5. You make a trip to the airport sound exciting and ever so poetic. Though so many have written about the moon and the stars, this is uniquely you. The images play with my mind.

  6. Kudos all around your office, your moon, your poetic heart, Claudia; a wonderful take on the Stein painting, and in your inimitable way, bending the imagery to embrace a real moment, some real emotion; always so versatile in this regard. My 3 daughters are all married now, and my 5 grandchildren become ad hoc compensation. Thanks for the art prompt.

  7. I love the dynamics of this piece…you really pull your readers mind in lot of directions but in a natural way…it doesn’t feel abrupt…I love your closing and the tangle…

    “purple sky scraps (beautifully textured)

    ‘round my rolled up sleeves,”

  8. Smiles. When you mentioned your car ride to Long Beach I remembered it was the night before that we had dinner and you were to leave at some ungodly hour of the morning. I’m still sad I was sick when you were supposed to come visit in the desert. Great poem to match her fun art. A world of fantasy.

  9. MMM! I love the juncture of the three worlds–the ride to the airport, changing light bulbs in the sky, and lighting up the office. If the world seems out of balance with all its sounds and various portals, at least it is well lit with the glow of human possibility.

  10. Each verse is a different glance at the picture…
    I got pity filled having digest the first verse via the second, only to question the moon why it would dare such !! to the airport, its such a step… Applaused!!

  11. my keyboard


    out of balance galaxies

    …as if the imagery already contained in the poem wasn’t fascinating enough, you just had to blow our minds with these lines…excellent piece of writing.

  12. What a treat this was to read-the imagery just grabbed me by my throat!So many beautiful moments captured effortlessly!The tension of reaching the airport-trying to distract her with stories-reaching office too early and then finally getting back to life without her-till she returns-yes ,balance is so vital:-)

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