Exotics Under Glass

flower house

breathe orchids’ breath
in a greenhouse
where fans whisper
in corners…misty
drifting scents of
evolving from Triassic
pinned scientific to a page…
as cymbidium and laelia,

watch lizards dart
erratic on fir shred…
diminished reptile traces
evolving from Triassic
they gorge stinging bee,
and armored beetle….
instinct killers pinned
scientific to a page
as iguania, gekkola,
and komodo

breathe and watch
in a greenhouse
evolving from Triassic
scientific to a page
oh…primate, hominidae
and sapiens

Bonnie Marshall

Artwork by Eric Ravilious

Counting Ten Billion Stars

Counting Ten Billion Stars

When astrophysicists explain
infinities of space,
they enter into realms
cryptic and consequential
as transcendent faith.

It’s as if they are describing
the color lilac
to someone blind since birth
as an essence to intuit
from the dense fragrance
in a lilac’s bloom.

I read their estimation
that for every human being
ever living on our Earth
there are ten billion stars
in the universe.

This could be wrong.
The numbers could be off…
a billion here and there.
Of course, I cannot see my stars
there in the dark night sky,
yet I sense their essence
so distant and profound.

Bonnie Marshall