the stars come out: a late-January zuihitsu

the stars come out


On these cold nights, I stand in the window and look at stars. A bright one hangs right over our western deck and the first time I get up, it is close enough to touch. The second time, I watch it set over the green rise beyond Sakinaw Lake, the one my children called Grass Lake Mountain for reasons of their own.


I didn’t watch the inauguration of the new president but I listened to Yo Yo Ma somehow capture the possibility and hope that so many are feeling and also the gravity of the times we live in. I listened as the grace his fingers found in the strings took me — us— from an old hymn to the yearning in Dvorak’s exploration of a new world to a simple dignified dance. We could dance. We could. Now would be the time.

Morning star light the way
Restless dreams all gone
Shadows gone, break of day
Real life has begun


Frost in the grass. A whole constellation glittering beneath my feet.


On these cold nights, we need more comfort. Bring out the old quilts, the variable stars, the Ohio stars, the mended stars, the faded. Sleep under them as that one bright star in the dark sky sets. No need to get up. No need to think about the old president ever again, or say his name.

4 thoughts on “the stars come out: a late-January zuihitsu”

  1. I love this form, Theresa. It seems to suit your talent for stringing together disparate ideas so their facets shine off one another. The way you firmly closed the book on America’s last chapter was a satisfying final thought. It’s always a treasure to find fresh writing from you in my inbox. Thank you!

    1. In a curious way, Susan, writing the little fragments that seem to me to be zuihitsu’s western cousins make me feel the way I used to feel writing poems. Brief and lyrical and completely themselves. Thank you so much for reading and for your generous comments!

  2. The first part is so poetic Theresa. I am always transported by your words. Your words bring me back, even though you sent me off to listen to Yo Yo Mah. šŸ™‚ I applaud your lovely way of shutting that darn door to the last USA president.
    And then your memories of your time in Ireland — your experiences are vast and you have such a soft and lyrical way of sharing them. I’m padding off now feeling both calm yet full of wonder.

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