Written by Shini Meyer Wang.
Graphic by Peyton Cabaniss.

Originally published as part of the Spring 2019 “Challenge” Issue.

threads of smoke from the ether

unravel down the sky

it is that tin-can shuttle rubble hurtling

across America’s TV boxes

the space voyager “Challenger”

a reverie turned fireball

our frontier is beyond the fishbowl

beyond the scorch of atmosphere

that hugs us tightly

our frontier is the stars that we sing for

dying and reborn in the distance

we remember evergreen bravery

backbones of stone crushed and cemented

a student obstructs a caterpillar of tanks

a woman stays seated on a forbidden bus seat

a man dons a loincloth and marches to sea

again and again straining against the stratosphere

bearing the heat with the thickness of their skin

until the rocket ship pierces into space

their breaths still lingering in our oxygen

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