A Countdown in Poems to the Irish Arts Center PoetryFest

Poem #7: My God, It's Full of Stars, by Tracy K. Smith

October 28, 2015  By Literary Hub

For the next six days Literary Hub will help in counting down the days until the seventh-annual Irish Arts Center PoetryFest begins by publishing a poem, as selected by festival co-curator Belinda McKeon. 


My God, It’s Full Of Stars (Excerpt), by Tracy K. Smith


. . . My father spent whole seasons

Bowing before the oracle eye, hungry for what it would find.

His face lit-up whenever anyone would ask, and his arms would rise


As if he were weightless, perfectly at ease in the never-ending

Night of space. On the ground, we tied postcards to balloons

For peace. Prince Charles married Lady Di. Rock Hudson died.


We learned new words for things. The decade changed.


The first few pictures came back blurred, and I felt ashamed

For all the cheerful engineers, my father and his tribe. The second time,

The optics jibed. We saw to the edge of all there is—


So brutal and alive it seemed to comprehend us back.


Literary Hub is a proud sponsor of Irish Arts Center PoetryFest.

More Story
How Author Photos Change the Way We Read It is something of an irony that the most well-known photograph of Virginia Woolf, captured by George Beresford in 1902,...