Etude for a hero

The radio blares in the car I drive,
blowing by green leaves and dead birds.
I drive on in a surge of speed
as you shine above me, Polaris,
you lead and I follow.

I notice you shyly,
as you appear-a diamond in the sky.
I am afraid to follow at first
for fear you are a falling star
or just the lights of an airplane
on its way down.

But you keep rising higher,
shining brighter,
letting the world revolve around you
while the universe follows.

I applaud your courage,
I’m proud of your humility,
I cheer for every ball you catch
and every bat you break.
I build your ego
your house
your morale-
and you, like any blind fool, let me.

You, Polaris, will fall someday
and Vega will take your place.
I will shift the gears of my car,
make a right turn
and head towards Vega-
my new northward star.

I read in the news someday-
they buried Polaris
in a gleaming white cemetery.
Polaris, Polaris, I think…
Polaris who?

 

1970s

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