From a million miles away, it looks too blue:
perfectly rounded, haloed with graceful spirals of cumulus,
its continents drifting away from each other
like lovers that long to touch again.
But on its surface,
someone drives into a crowd, detonates a bomb, or lifts a weapon,
cradles it between a thumb and index finger,
contemplates the black hole
at the end of its long, sleek barrel.
The motive is always a little cloudy, yet the incidents repeat themselves:
in malls, in theaters, in schools, in dance clubs, on bridges.
No one can explain why. It’s something
to do with whatever it is that spins,
so red and angry, inside the skull.
There is no sound in outer space.
But here, some days, you can hear it, so close to you,
in the electronics aisle of a Wal-Mart.
Employees in the stock room look up, startled
by what sounds like a hollow box falling from a shelf.
From a million miles away, the earth looks blue as gunmetal—
it’s that same color we see from our back yards
when we tip our heads to the afternoon sky
and stare beyond those swirling clouds
that hide so much pain.