After the moon had set,
the sky was so full of stars
and so empty just the same.
Orion, the Pleiades, the Big Dipper,
the Milky Way arching from the aspens
to the swamp across the road.
Venus, Goddess of Love,
the brightest star in the east,
an hour before sunrise.
The Little Dipper hanging
for a thirsty traveler on the pole star
nailed to the black well of northern sky.
You are the cause of my yearning
and its tender solace. Why do we feel
things better after they are gone,
Tracing the shape of their absence?