A painting of a crescent moon hovering above a bed of pink clouds
Painting by Karenna Brown

The day moon sits like a crooked smile
just above the horizon, spins
in a sky as blue as Mary’s robe
and travels to Afghanistan
to buy lapis lazuli like the masters
of the Renaissance. It wishes it could inlay
the heavens with bits of the lapis lazuli
and red coral like the Standard of Ur
and other Sumerian art it admires. In fact,
the day moon is a master
of the twenty-first century. It lingers
near the chairs and coffee tables
of Eames and Nakashima. The day moon is jealous
of the lion’s roar, wishes it could make thunder,
but only the clouds that hide the day moon
can make thunder. Sometimes
it feels so full it imagines exploding and releasing
hundreds of thousands of white moths
and everyone mistakes them for snow.
Other times, the day moon wants to vanish,
to see how thin and sharp it can become,
like a blade that hums with the whine of summer
mosquitos, and like the mosquitos
the day moon is out for blood.

Didi Jackson is the author of Moon Jar and the forthcoming collection My Infinity. She is the recipient of the Robert H. Winner Memorial Award from the Poetry Society of America and teaches creative writing at Vanderbilt University.