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Jasper Dark Sky Festival

Jasper Dark Sky Festival

We were lost in the streamers of Aurora Borealis,
the dark starry sky bearing blue butterflies—
to arrive at a wooden bridge over tiny glaciers
between lit wavering candles. An Aurora
flagging your head, says we could maybe
hold each other with your glove on my waist.

We herd with the crowd, you look for the drones,
as they all look on Google Maps on their phones.
Drones circle, drawing Saturn. The Jasper Dark
Sky Festival is lit in the wildflowers of drones. An Aurora
from Kindergarteners, rainbow paper mache.

An Aurora I scribe. A boy is tickled by a snowflake
melting, a scene from Lost in Translation—are those
happy or sad tears? Two drones butterfly-kiss.

A neon green raver aurora, drowns in fire smoke, awake
late dancing, leaks poison on the faces of black bears and deer,
they are sad because their cubs and fawns are emo and
missing at the stripclub. Zootopia makes more fermented sugarcane.

A lonely athletic old woman, shakes as she instructs
yoga at the festival, yelling into a microphone,
between evergreen of snow, and shaking mothers with kids—
no father—in Warrior 1 poses. Mothers lined-up, who are much
past home time like the fathers and awake during the Aurora.

Aurora looks too poisonous, too much of a raver
at twilight, stop looking, it looks stupid. Aurora magenta
has brain fog from no sleep, wailing on the homework.
An Aurora streamer says, clean up the garbage please.
Another Aurora streamer says, nah, you do it.
Museums of Auroras we wandered into
since the dawn of youth angst. You drew a
caricature of me at Stampede with Kahlo
and Piglet with wings. The plane my mother took
to Canada—sit between the Aurora for a picket fence.

Incel Aurora of purple waves at us, waiting
for deer to pop-up like a virus. An animal night tour
too populated, made for us. I want to go alone with
you instead, watching grizzly bear families, stomp
tracks in the snow, with you, but I know
grizzly bears run and gallop faster than us.

Only the Aurora Borealis can make us feel guilt
for our attention-span and need for novelty or
modernism. Nothing comes close to the Aurora. Even,
when I say, you’re a stupid cheater, it’s bright.

You’re right, you reply, maybe one day you’ll be
okay with that, I’m sorry, but you have to accept
that it happened. I guess we’re both waiting to be the
Aurora—the crowd will watch us, flickering
lights on their faces, even at three AM, at our tired eyes—
Even when you’re a stupid cheater, you’re bright.