Off Camera by Karla Linn Merrifield

I’m certain there were times when she
wanted to lose herself in a solar system
more than double ours in age.
That’s how far back she aches
(badly as her weakened lumbar)
for her soul to travel to a period
when the universe was just starting out,
long before non-stop self-sacrifices,
and to a place too close to the sun
for habitation, all the better to immolate
wifehood, motherhood, sainthood— make it
extra-terrestrially impossible for her spirit
to take three babies’ shit, her disabled husband’s shitty
diapers. Wash. Feed. Wipe, Dress. Undress. Wipe.
No more! No more! No more! Astropoetics dictates
calculated Hallucinations in Deep Time.

I forward Mrs. Hawking’s dreams to Kepler-444
where she reposes in the House of Muses.

+++++++++++++après Theory of Everything


A nine-time Pushcart-Prize nominee and National Park Artist-in-Residence, Karla Linn Merrifield has had over 600 poems appear in dozens of journals and anthologies. She has twelve books to her credit, the newest of which is Bunchberries, More Poems of Canada, a sequel to. Godwit:  Poems of Canada (FootHills), which received the Eiseman Award for Poetry. She is assistant editor and poetry book reviewer for The Centrifugal Eye, a member of Just Poets (Rochester, NY),  the New Mexico State Poetry Society, and the Florida State Poetry Society.  Visit her blog, Vagabond Poet, at