A Fall

driving the New York Thruway
later than I mean to
I feel the sky quite near
                                          “twinkle, twinkle, little star…”
                                                                                         you fall
before my eyes
a long, two-second descent
burning out
in slow motion
                                          “how I wonder….”
you’re splendid
in your final journey
then lost to blackness
without violence or alarm

they used to say
the stars were held in place
by hidden pins, behind the ceiling of the sky
like sets of dress shirt studs
or a vast array of jeweled rings
piercing the ears of heaven

did someone pull your pin?

in any case
you’ve gone to where all fallen stars
sleep away the ages,
while I wonder if I ever fall so slowly–
with so much ease
and so much grace