Above the clouds and people on the ground

Beyond earth and the star that restrains it

In a small galaxy there can be found

A black hole, a spaceman, and his rocket.


This galaxy has its own neighborhood

Tiny planets, families, homes, and lives.

The spaceman sees it all as well and good

But on his rocketship is where he thrives.


He orbits ‘round an old and dying star

And the metal of his rocketship shakes.

He’s stuck! The ship can’t escape very far,

But if it falls too close it’s sure to break.


Along his circular path, there are rocks –

Small earths upon which live the spaceman’s friends.

Celestial bodies near, unorthodox,

And wave before the spaceman’s orbit bends.


He smiles within his home of tin and glass,

Alone, but with a hungry mouth to feed.

The black hole, if left unfed, might trespass

And swallow up the rocket in its greed.


The black hole yawns hungrily down below

As the spaceman opens a small door-latch

And, to sate the groaning void, makes a show

Of throwing things out of the rocket’s hatch


Down songs and books and sweets and letters fall

To fill the deepening hole from within.

These things the spaceman loves, he gives them all

To stave off his consumption once again.


Should the spaceman leave orbit, he’d drift off,

Directionless, and the void would follow

Expanding to consume until it caught

The spaceman, whom it would promptly swallow.


The opposite of flying far away

Would be just as bad for both man and ship

Flying close would mean orbit’s quick decay –

A rough descent on their last one-way trip.


The neighbors wondered why he stayed aboard.

“The spaceman could land here, if he wanted!”

They couldn’t see that he cannot afford

To leave the hole that had so long taunted.


He’d often wondered if coming to dock

Would, from the black hole, offer him reprieve.

But abandon ship to live upon the rock?

That was something he could not conceive.


The spaceman’s only hope shines from afar

Beyond gravity and glass that restrain

The beacon-light of a bright, distant Star

Speaks of new orbit that will one day reign.


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