Dustmops and neutrinos:

Icons of the gap

Between the sky and snow,

Quiet as a map,


Whose tiny lives were meant

Not for us to try

Alone, but to blend

In time with ions,


Microscopic glues,

Attractions grown

From household things

Until our vacuums fuse,


My elements a part

Of a larger elegance

To which the strange horizon brings

My ordinary accidents,


Without whose cosmic compass

(Which my atoms lack)

The world is just abyss,

And matter so much bric-a-brac.


Tippet Alley

February 2nd, 2008