The Amateur Astronomer's Lament

by Larry Kalinowski

Larry Kalinowski - The Amateur Astronomer's Lament

The word is out,
The news just arrived:
A brand new comet
has just been spied.

You rush to the closet,
and move all the stuff,
crack open the case,
push aside all the fluff.

Out pops an eyepiece,
a Barlow and hope,
that all other parts
will turn into a 'scope.

Then rush to the yard
and hunt for a spot
that will give you a view
late tonight, or a shot.

After setting the tripod
and levelling the mount,
you tighten the thumbscrews
and then start the count.

The clock ticks away
as the Sun starts to set.
The drive motor's checked.
Now you're ready, you bet.

The sky dims so slowly,
your heart starts to pound.
Only minutes to go,
your thoughts are profound.

Thinking tails and coma
and sights seldom seen,
you're about to witness
the amateur's dream.

"What's this?" you cry out.
Moving just into sight,
a cloud front is coming.
"Oh no, not tonight!"

The gloom moves right in
and covers the spot
where the 'scope was pointed.
Now there's only a blot.

The rest of the sky
slowly covers and dies.
"I can't wait till tomorrow!"
the astronomer cries.

- Larry F. Kalinowski

© 2022 Larry Kalinowski