February 28, 2024



Barefoot in the dirt outside our tent
in the dark, I bend back my head
and open my heart to the night.

I hope to see heaven unravel
as galaxies take up the thread
then spin, then stretch, as 
vast, practiced hands
join woof with warp 
until smooth folds of time become
measureless yards of
absence and substance—
endless bolts of evidence
unrolling across the sky.

Meanwhile, one by one,
after billion-year trips,
photons land without fanfare 
in my eyes, in my hair,
each quantum a jewel that
graces the dirt where I stand.

—Katarina Stenstedt

I posted the original version of this poem in 2016 and called it Handmade. I like this 2024 incarnation better, but poems are funny that way—maybe each version has its own place and time and reason for being.