Mei-mei Berssenbrugge

September 19, 2019 
A story from the Spring/May Issue of Conjunctions by Mei-mei Berssenbrugge. Berssenbrugge was born in Beijing and grew up in Massachusetts. She is the author of many volumes of poetry, including, most recently, I Love Artists: New and Selected Poems, Nest, Four Year Old Girl, Empathy, and The Heat Bird. Characteristic of her style is a lush mix of abstract language, collaged images, cultural and political investigation, and unexpected shifts between the meditative and the particular.

How to describe ETs who exist in a realm without distance or time


She does not distinguish spirit from body, which interweave via the senses.

“It begins with wonder, then interest.”

The light of mind and sunlight entwine in your eye, though separately each is unseen, like starlight without an object to fall on.

Deep space is black.

Inner life coalesces with daylight, a spectrum on which fluctuations of light from the object stimulate sight, while you simultaneously enhance your reception until finally you see the ideal within the real.

Your consciousness lovingly assimilates new events to enhance cognition that ensouls space.

I present physical evidence where applicable, but my interest is in my informant and her words.

I learn more about that Eureka moment when intense phenomenon becomes transparent to the ideal. 


Material and imaginary flow into each other through a crack of light, “observation,” between worlds.

Juxtaposition becomes a blend of unconscious and external event; the more distant the relation, the more emotional, poetic, the perception.

For my witness, bright physical light weakens the interpretive.

But there are two emanations, one from the eye (close to mind) and one from a star, which conjoin.

Her close encounters inscribe such diffuse, liminal boundaries of the imaginary.

Psyche becomes increasingly collective, as it assimilates with the gorgeous world.

It’s as if a star offers you the nourishing ineffable light of a new realism between subject and object.

That beings of light from outer space manifest to you physically is unproven in my field, but still true.

Each account is recorded as fact in my notebook.

Then I can travel up through light and become more intimate with its star.


I wake and see out the window a ball of light swirling above the trees.

A woman stands under the trees, where certain plants grow; she knots leaves into a symbol using streamers of light, and as I watch, I know I’ll remember.

My window is the same as light going through it; luminous is a better word than translucent.

When I try to describe her, I draw a star; I saw stars like children’s stickers on the window glass; I know if I draw one, I can go there.

Darkness is light’s resting state in deep space; transparence can occur all at once: the way a face lights up with understanding, or a light wave passes me to Andromeda with the swiftness of near and far at the same time.

Consciousness may be such a light source with metaphoric power; thread is a feeling of spiritual connection, sunlight is love.

Language and energy interchange; we can experience a physical event by association, by algorithm.

A star visitor could be the attribute of such an association.

Seeing starlight is seeing the visible in the invisible, that fragile imaginal cloth holding planet and existence together.

When I ask if she’s literally an extraterrestrial or a metaphor from inner realms, she says there’s no difference in significance.

I loosen my ego boundaries to transcribe what she chooses to recall, real from the standpoint of our mutually raised consciousness, a vehicle like a star ship


Their skies are full of life.

She describes starlight as scalar, without properties of distance or time.

Any spirit in matter she calls star walking: remote viewing, meditation, intuition, plants she was shown, and any soul possessing a certain shine she calls starlight.

The power of relation came through her extraordinary yellow eyes, she tells me.

You’re looking into a star, convex, immense, flashing colors through opalescent, flowing nuclear fusion.

I feel separated from home now; I look up at night with great longing.

They showed me earth through their eyes; their oneness extends to us.

Whereas, I’m in the dark, then it opens onto luminescence; there’s a lot of “snow.”

There’s a lot of stars, huge, no horizon and very bright.

I see the Pleiades; I feel like a wolf looking toward home.

Whew! a shooting star just dropped there onto snow, so I go over to it.

A crystal has dropped on the snow, and there’s light, a face in the stone; it’s as if I’m looking up through the sky and things are very clear, and I’m coming up through the ice.

I’ve been below all this time, and now I see stars.


“Lux” by Mei-mei Berssenbrugge is excerpted from Conjunctions: 72, Nocturnals (Spring/May 2019). Copyright © 2019 Mei-mei Berssenbrugge. 

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