The Week in Longing

There is so much ending and beginning
just this week alone
and I can’t catch any of it,
not to keep, or truly know.
Deep under an ocean full of longing
they’ve found part of the belly
of the space shuttle that blew
back when I was in high school,
another part added to the vast
stores of wonder, debris
and heartache NASA catalogues.
In deep space they’ve seen a neutron star
pulsing on the darkest stage
for more time than it should,
described its pure neutron shell,
as though we could reach out
and brush its surface longingly.
The astronomer who described
these stars as “such weird exotic objects”
found a spot in my brain
few other news stories reach,
like the rosy tentacles of the shy
Pacific octopus tenderly enclosing
a diver in what must surely
be a form of longing,
its warmth and trust
holding for nearly an hour.
The same sense of security
ensnared a rufous hummingbird
with unseasonably warm air up north.
Missing the cues to migrate,
she was stuck when the air
suddenly turned chill.
Overcoming her suspicion
of a clear box that held food
she found herself on a long drive south
where a woman released
her at the Canada-US border
hoping the bird’s instincts would kick in.
And I am caught by each
of these endings and beginnings,
their familiar sorrows. I pine
for nothing new in a restless world
that’s nothing but new all the time.