It’s a long story:
how I wound up
stranded on some nameless island
in the middle of the Pacific
hundreds of miles away
from any other living human
and definitely no wifi.
Entertainment was pretty scant,
especially at night.
All I could do was lie on my back
on the rocky shoreline
and stare at the glowing universe
In Brooklyn, I never saw so many stars
or the glowing fingers of the Milky Way
or darting meteors streaking
across the blackness
for just a second
before being extinguished like a candle.
I wasn’t good at identifying constellations
when I was young.
It’s definitely harder
when you can only see half the stars.
The diagonal belt of Orion
was the only one
that made a lasting impression.
So while I was stuck on this island,
I made up my own constellations,
giving birth to a new zodiac.
There was the leprous armadillo,
the oversized spoon,
the gullible mailman,
the lost backpack,
the reduced sodium spaghetti sauce,
the neighborly snake,
the seditious hipster,
the befuddled opossum,
the fair-trade diamond,
the deadly sandwich,
the morose goose.
It’s another long story:
but I was finally rescued
during the season
of the impractical designer handbag.
Back in Brooklyn,
my old friends in the sky
are now mostly invisible,
but lying in the park here with you,
I point out the very faint tip
of a diseased armadillo’s banded tail.