January Gill


How A Star Dies


Sometimes gravity wins. Sometimes stars burn bright
and hot but cool off quietly and beyond our reach.

Rooftops know this, as do empty neighborhood streets
and chill winds blowing through the barely open window.

Much of that light is wasted, yet it illuminates this house,
this bed in which I sleep alone. Without the darkness

I would have never seen it. Everything is finite,
even love. It sputters and fades like a white dwarf,

a cooling ember that on a clear night
would be overlooked for some other beauty—

a scattering of stars whose light keeps coming
in waves. The grace-ache of killing time.