Obliquity of the Ecliptic

Poetry, Prose, Photography, etc.

Early October, 5:34pm

The sun was a silver smear in the cloudy sky
It hurt my eyes and made me wonder
Riding along the winding path
How something so warm
And so bright
could be
so cold
When thinly veiled
Unable to even touch
The wind-whipped treetops
Or the bat house on the lake side
But then I knew it had to be autumn.

© 2018 Obliquity of the Ecliptic


Sweet Nothing

I was a beauty queen in a bed sheet
Messy hair a work of art
And a girl with savage fits
“Don’t know how, but you’re killing me, kid”

I remember the amber glow of streetlights
And long walks down darkened streets
I was beauty dancing in a hurricane
In neon flashes of blue and green

Counting freckles on bare shoulders
As he pulled me closer
Blue-eyed, blue-collared
A boy with peasant blood
Who adored a queen at heart

All good things come to an end
And I feel relief
Because as much as we loved
It was all sweet nothing

© 2018 Obliquity of the Ecliptic

A Poem for the Moon

She is what I wish to be
Glowing, radiant
And perfect.
When I am hot, she is cool
When I am gone, she is there.
A sparkling eye, a shining face
Veiling a layer of subtle grace
What is it like, to be adored?
It seems like a burden
She is too humble to bear.
It is a duty performed
With modest flair.
There she is
And here I stay
Small and far away
My mind full of starlight
My thoughts in the clouds.
One look puts me in a haze
Lasting for days
And it warbles all the sounds.
I’ve always been blue,
But I daydream in red when I see you.

© 2018 Obliquity of the Ecliptic

Summer is a Sunshower


Summer is a sunshower
The light catching on the rain
The pool speckled with ripples
Eyelids beginning to droop
As heavy as water

Summer is green tea
A half-glass of lemon and mint
Moist like the morning air
Fluid as time and thought

Summer is a tropical depression
With large galls and rumbling clouds
When the parents are too tired to fight
And the kids too tired to listen

Summer is a bird call
Long and low and lazy
Stuck between pleasant and tiresome
Echoing the subconscious

Summer is aloe
To rub on burnt skin, freckled welts,
And scars that will never heal
Only fade

Summer is discovery
A never-ending journey
Down dimly-lit streets at midnight
With mosquitoes as companions
And reality a bit altered

Summer is peppered chicken
Sizzling and savory
Eaten warm for dinner
And cold for breakfast
Mixed with fresh greens
And scrambled eggs
And repetition

Summer is freedom
Sickly-sweet and desired
Terrifying and unwanted
An enigma
A paradox
A contradiction

Summer is a sundae
Thick and gooey and whole
Whipped cream and chocolate sauce
Warm from the stove
Melting cold cream
Tasting like salted caramel

Sweet as an evening free from worry

Summer is a Sunday
Forever and always
The conclusion of one age
The prelude to another
Church mornings and busy evenings
Peanut butter and honey
Pop songs on the radio
Card games never finished
A breath of relief
Which becomes a perpetual sigh

Summer is over
And yet it never ends.

© 2017 Obliquity of the Ecliptic

The Tale of Two


At first, they were orphans.
The first a brunette, the second a blonde.
Both insignificant and small
With eyes wide and fingers frail
Trembling in terror.
Side by side, hand in hand.
That is how they were found,
And that is how they were sent,
Sent to the sad little home
For sad little girls just like them.

Insignificant they were,
But helpless they were not.

The Brunette was the dreamer,
Consequently quieter in nature.
The Blonde was small,
With a contagious exuberance
That always lifted the dreamer’s spirits.
“Daisy,” she was called,
Her true name long forgotten,
But daisy was better fitting
For a girl born of the sun.

The home was dismal
Harsh as the world outside.
Knowing each would never survive
Without the other at her side
The two became inseparable,
Day and especially night,
Until the dreaded time came
For them to be separated
By the cruel hands of Fate
Or rather the crueler hands of man.


They were almost grown
Adolescence upon them like a curse.
The dreamer had grown tall,
Shy and awkward in nature,
Her dark hair wearily managed
Her emotions locked behind tied tongue.
Daisy was still so fierce
As bright as her namesake,
A nymph who scorned the advancements
Of gods and men
A harpy of honey and milk.

They were pulled apart,
Screaming and crying
Like the children they once were,
And Daisy was taken away.
No one would tell the dreamer where,
No matter how she begged.
The two were young women now,
They must learn what young women learned.
The dreamer’s dreams were stifled,
And Daisy,
Soft, sweet Daisy
Wilted without her other half.

The two could dress the part
Speak the lines
Please the probing eyes of men
With their waltzes and curtsies
Clothed in ruffles and lace
And powdered in white,
Their lips painted
But their smiles faint.


The dreamer read books
The works of Sappho and Stoker and Mérimée
To feed her hungry heart in trying times,
But it was not the same.
No less entrapped, Daisy would giggle
In the company of many,
Invoking chuckles for her charm,
But it was all pretend.
For their eyes were dull
Their faces weak when compared
To the bittersweet memory
Of her dreamer’s crooked smile.

But one night,
When the moon was full in her splendor
And the shadows whispered promisingly,
she did not have to pretend,
Because in that dimly-lit room of red
Was the dreamer,
Treading timidly in the wake of the men
Whose words were as dusty as death.
When the dreamer saw Daisy,
She ran forward at once
New life had brightened her eyes
And lightened her steps.

Daisy threw her arms around the dreamer’s neck,
Much to the chagrin of her suitors,
And laughed like a fiend.

Their happiness was full.
They would escape that night,
Free from their troubles
Because they had each other.
Off they ran,
Barefoot and brave
Serene and whole.
Everything was perfect
Until the dreamer awoke.

© 2017 Obliquity of the Ecliptic

The Mermaid and the Moon


I created it for my digital design class with Photoshop, inspired by Ted Hughes’s poem “Song,” particularly the first stanza:

O lady, when the tipped cup of the moon blessed you
You became soft fire with a  cloud’s grace;
The difficult stars swam for eyes in your face;
You stood, and your shadow was my place:
You turned, your shadow turned to ice
O my lady

© 2017 Obliquity of the Ecliptic

On the 16th of December

The sky,
Rose petal and lavender
With tinges of tangerine,
Peeked through tree gaps like an old friend
Who’s seen it all
Yet continues to persist
Morning after morning
Sunrise after sunrise.

A floating figure of indistinguishable shape
Dances among the treetops
For the briefest of moments
Before disappearing from view.
Perhaps a balloon or a kite
Or wayward cloud
Come to kiss the horizon
Like a bashful child.

© 2017 Obliquity of the Ecliptic