Can We Live Without Cosmos?

by Katie Campbell

10. We are cosmos.
              or—we need cosmos
              or—we need oxygen
              or—we're all insane.
              Everybody look down!

9. What colour is a hole in space?
The colour of light, I guess.
You can stare at the stars
but don't stare at the sun
or the moon will get jealous.
              And you'll probably go blind.
There is so much beyond your atmosphere
but you fear the feeling
of flight, so you look down
while I am burning up.

8. Don't tell me your satellite is broken
when I've heard you calling home.
Someone has to stay behind, you know
and someone won't return.
Light beam lasers make my retinas
see colours inverted
                just like me.

Hey baby, look down,
you can see the whole world from here.
No one watched the broadcast
except a few invisible women
                really a shame, ‘cause I smile best
                for a camera,
                gravity or no.

7. How much space is there in a hole?
Depends on what you put in it.
I'm sick of existing
out of orbit and out of
time, free floating, not falling,
because here there's no direction
only orientation
relative to other
                people, in one sense,

                places, in another.
And things. Always things,
space junk of a half life millenia making its way
somewhere over the—
                I guess there aren't rainbows in space.

6. I don't care what colour your space hole is.
I'm burning up upon reentry
so tell my wife I love her.
                or—tell me that she loves me.
                or—throw the ring down the drain.
                or—tell me that we won.
                You know I'm fine.

I'm lonely in the dark, avoiding
the void just beyond
the stars that know our names
and tell us dirty secrets.
               As if Earth is all that wholesome.

5. In space, no one can hear you
orgasm. It's hard
to feel anything in a spacesuit,
so we strip down and tangle limbs
find that zero g spot.
We float, fetally bound to one another,
drifting naked past the entire Earth.
               Freud would have a field day with this.

Who's to say
that we aren't the aliens we've been searching for?

4. How many holes are there in space?
Enough to fill the Albert Hall
smirks John, in the thick of it all,
I hear those voices at night sometimes
says Brandon. We're not alone
as long as our satellites keep
spinning. We have a problem
but it's nothing a little oxygen can't fix.
                I'd love to turn you on
                but the batteries are running low
                and it's all in my mind but
                we'll need the fuel to get
                back home.

3. How many pianos are there in space?
Only the ones we sent up. If Yuri
had the time and/or skill and/or space, maybe Tchiakovsky
would've echoied off the edges of the universe.
                 There's no sound in space, so I hear
                 and I've heard the universe is endless
                 but still, it's the thought.

                 Perhaps music would have ended the war.

2. Laika dug a hole in space
and we praised her for it.
Don't believe their lies—
she dug it for herself.

1. Lift-off.
Four thousand black holes
in cosmos infinite and cold
and I'm missing you.
Break through the atmosphere
free falling towards
an inverted orientation
that sounds just like

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