Fly By [quest-narrative-in-progress]

Pluto by Moonlight from

Pluto by Moonlight


MacGuffin: the arbitrary goal in a quest narrative.

Barely awake from its long hibernation,
packed tight: with an ounce of Clyde,
the US flag, a postage stamp, and a quarter;
the space pod wings towards a dove-
colored dwarf at the edge
of a solar system
we call ours.

Jupiter’s slingshot gravity-assist
so very ooh and ah
only not the fireworks kind.

Transmissions at the speed of light,
translated into pictures our minds can read.
There’s the shadow of a whale we’ve met before, and
the glacial heart: luminous, disintegrating.
Iron tears down Pluto’s cheek

Why we people our
sky with ancient gods.

Pluto’s icy crust and

deep below, warmth
from an unknown source.
Cryovolcanoes spew
plumes of nearly-ice:
mountains, canyons,
the tiger stripes of Enceladus,
the inner sea of Pluto.
Warmth from an unknown source.

High above, a pack of moons,
spin and grin
at the frozen dwarf.

You could float or fall
in the chasms of Charon
for a very long time
if gravity let you.

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