August 21st 2017
It took 48 years for the sun to swallow
all of the moon. The slow fade feeling like an
ancient way of dimming, as if something were
forever ending. I remember hoping the Veil would thin
during this 90 second night, allowing me to see
my mother in the temporary shadow under the ash
tree. Revealed by the darkness. But in the moment
I was too awed to look away from the spectacle in the sky,
and if she were waving, ethereally, next to me, I didn’t see it,
distracted by the wonderment blooming in my chest, like the face
of God might just burst forth from behind that black ring.
A vision of parrot feathered human heads bouncing
down a pyramid. But the light returned and a true night passed.
I’ve eclipsed her years, and I’ve seen all of her I’ll ever see.
Mike L. Nichols is a graduate of Idaho State University and a recipient of the Ford Swetnam Poetry Prize. He lives and writes in southeast Idaho. Look for his poetry in Black Rock & Sage, Rogue Agent, Tattoo Highway, Spider Mirror Journal, and elsewhere. Find more at mikenicholsauthor.com
Featured image by Tyler van der Hoeven