They called me Pluto from afar, and I,
Nameless and void, embraced the title
With the force of a thousand burning suns,
Each one like the star I loved ever so dearly,
An immense sphere of fire which had me
Helplessly, hopelessly bound by its gravity,
Caught in its orbit from the beginning of time.
They called me Pluto still from further still,
Speaking my name as the orbit of myself
And their water world drove us apart,
And I gladly, worshipfully rejoiced –
I had a name; I was no longer void.
I was distant still, but they called me Pluto,
And I wore my name like regalia,
A crown upon my lifeless skin.
They called me Pluto still as they
Waded further from the cosmic shore
That was their home, sending probes
That touched the regolith of Mars –
There was life, and light, spreading out from Planet Earth,
So I waited, hoping they’d come for me
Sooner rather than later, tomorrow and not two centuries from now.
They called me Pluto even as they stripped me of my name –
I was ‘planet’ no longer,
And I grew colder and bitterer as I spun,
Because I knew things they did not,
Things about the rise and fall of civilizations.
They did not see what I had seen,
They had not been watching
Since the dawn-time.
They called me Pluto,
And they cried my name
As I watched them burn,
The light of the flickering candle in the dark
That had once been humankind
Flaring, more luminous than the sun for one bright, shining moment,
They called me Pluto in the aftermath,
As if I were the God of the underworld,
Guarding their lost souls from my far-off perch,
Shepherding that which could not be led,
But I was not their God, even if I’d once fathomed them as mine.
So here I wait, patient, eternal, void and barren,
For them to leave me lonely when they no longer
Dare to speak my name from the realm
I am the supposed guardian of;
They called me Pluto.
You can find more of my poetry at caitlincacciatore.wordpress.com
Edited August 2017