Galaxies, Or Regarding Poor Prufrock

Image by FelixMittermeier from Pixabay

When I saw that this week’s Penable poetry competition had the theme of “galaxy,” my first thought was of the poem “The Lovesong of J. Alfred Prufrock” by T. S. Eliot.

Update: I won! Thank you to everyone for your support! Thank you H. R. Phoenix for hosting the contest and thank you Saania for selecting my poem!

The original “Prufrock” begins with the lines “Let us go then, you and I,/When the evening is spread out against the sky/Like a patient etherized upon a table.” If you want to read that entire poem, you can find it here.

My poem isn’t meant to be a response to “The Lovesong of J. Alfred Prufrock.” My poem is simply what I thought about while I reread that poem and reflected on galaxies.

Galaxies, Or Regarding Poor Prufrock

In a lush field upon our backs we lie
with our palms spread out flat against the sky,
like a perfect frame for the gleaming stars.

Around us we hear the swift-moving cars,
racing to their destinations, but ours
is simply here under the summer heat,

For we don’t want to roam the busy streets,
we desire to just wait in peace and meet
constellations, greeting them one by one.

Soon, though, even without illumination from the sun,
our gentle quietude becomes undone,
reminded of life’s chaos by the overwhelming vastness of space.

A disheartening question now we face:
Among the cosmos, what is our place?
It ravages, rages, consumes our brains

until it is the only thought that remains.
Though to the tranquil darkness, it does not pertain,
so we wonder if it needs answered at all.

The beaming starlight once more does call,
and though we may feel stuck and small,
held in by the pointillated dark sheet above,

we notice the heavens surround us with love.
That inquiry flies off like a dove
as we feel safe beneath the galaxies.

We will return to questions of mortality,
morality, reality, and unreality,
but for now, we focus on the view. How pretty!

For this moment,
we ignore memories of the city,
the hustle and bustle, the anxiety,
that simultaneous crowded, lonely curse.

Those thoughts are for another poet’s verse–
We do not dare disturb the universe.

15 thoughts on “Galaxies, Or Regarding Poor Prufrock

  1. The poem is indeed philosophical in tone. And it talks about the realisation of how the human’s abilities is limited compared with the galaxy. The speaker just sits simply and enjoys the sky while the rest of the world is busy running around in dilemma. The question “where is our space?”, evoked by the speaker, makes the readers understand the way humans desperately depend on the vast galaxy. The imageries and metaphors used in the poem is appreciable. The unanswered questions are left unanswered. unlike others who spend their whole life among the crowd of chaos, the speaker preferably stands alone and enjoys looking at the sky which is so pretty. And the last touch of another poet, referring to prufrock who merely narrates the things he watches, is mildly mocked with charm.
    Cleaver attempt! Clear concept! Pretty penning!

    Liked by 1 person

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