Tourist To The Sun

by Virginia Betts

Fired-up for take-off,

wearing my asbestos suit, designed to deflect,

I bring with me a cabin full of un-marked baggage for the hold.

Wing walker without a rope,

hurtling to the light fantastic,


First to sign up

to step off the map;

where even the silvery surface is marked by dark spots;

even the brightest star is already dead.

With outstretched arms I 

surrender to the sun,

glide, star-shaped, licked by flicking tongues of flame,

into the white-hot core;

white heat devouring sound,

eclipsing time,

searing conscience and 

annihilating thought.

Not arrogance that brings me here,

but fear.

The elemental need to fly, unfettered,

to pilot my own craft;

to pierce reality,

and seek the truth behind it,

and, in seeking, half expect to find it.

And thus, avoiding bird-strikes,

negotiate safe water-landings

when at last I am earthbound;

within my hand,

a brand to fire my piece of earth’s story

when I return

scorched and burned.

I wrote this poem a while ago. If you want to leave a comment on what you think it is about, feel free. My son watched ‘Rocket Man’ and thought it captured Elton John/fame perfectly. I wrote it before I saw Rocket Man, although this is one of my favourite films. However, I see what he means. It comes from my collection , Tourist To The Sun, which I hope to publish in full, and is one of a number of spacey poems I have written. This poem has been published online before. Enjoy – there will be more to come.

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