Suspended ruefully in its own shine
an object of vast proportion, it heaves
forth light in all spectrums
gamma, ultraviolet, radio
spinning off photons to travel
4 or 5 or 6 million million miles
settling on satellites and gas giants
on our own blue-green world.
Its hydrogen fusing in a core unseen
the engine of everything.
Its light helped in no small way
to begat here life
flourishing in the early seas
evolving through tortious
turquoise to create such perfect
machines as these – viruses.
They effect and infect
all living things and their offspring
From his thatched huts and altitude high
yurts to the glass canyons of NY and
wonderful LA suburbia, these little
critters everywhere, traveling from
hand to hand,
saliva dripped and shared
each lollipop a choice
carrier of contagion.
All of the children playing
with their lives, so many dying
or crippled by one sure bastard in
particular this polio
worse for the nation
than even Red Russian invasion-
So what could be done?
Joyous, Jonas Salk came
and using his reason, his knowledge, his
patience (and patients) over long years
filled with death; he succeeded in
killing a killer.
And under the sun around which
this planet turns
in sight of the Milky Way,
in a prick of silver injected as
bells ring and choirs sing
the children of the Americas
and Europe, and Africa, and Asia
celebrate a way to prevent the
terrible, the horrible, to stop
the mass concentration of Iron Lungs
and baby-sized braces
for weakly withered limbs.
This man Salk, full of happiness,
for sure, but shock at the applause-
he’s a private man after all.
The newsman ask about the money
he missed to make,
from what a Capitalist
must be seen as a true mistake:
“There is no patent,”
(and therefore no profit)
“Could you patent the sun?”
The question lingers long after
the conversation is done.