Shared Sky

by David Hassler

Sun and Moon, bring us together,
all of us, sky watchers, stargazers
staring up, dreaming out
beyond ourselves. Let us wonder
at our clockwork universe and
witness your magical vanishing act.

We want to stand in the sweet spot,
aligned on the path of totality,
to watch as the Moon’s umbra flies
from Mazatlan to Newfoundland,
over Texas, Ohio, and Maine, gathering
our homes, schools, farmlands,
and rapt, upturned faces.
We want to converge with you,
disappear for a moment, crowned
with a gleaming, evanescent corona.

What diamond of insight can be revealed
as the Moon nibbles at the Sun’s edge,
while metallic, liquid light swims about,
fraying the corners of our blankets?
What can we see in the dark?

We humans are here on Earth to gawk,
to bear witness to the spectacular.
Teach us, Sun and Moon, to live
in alignment with each other.
Remind us our hearts are small cousins
of you, our home star, rhythmically
pulsing, expanding and contracting.
Guide us in your cosmic dance.
Pull us together along a shared path
to whoop and cheer at your beauty.

Shared Sky is an interactive online poetry project celebrating the science and wonder of the 2024 Total Solar Eclipse.




Shared Sky was created by the Wick Poetry Center at Kent State University in collaboration with Dr. Aimee A. Norton, Senior Research Scientist, Stanford University, Solar Physics Group. The model poem, “Shared Sky,” was written by David Hassler, Bob and Walt Wick Executive Director of the Wick Poetry Center, for the 2024 Total Eclipse.

Poets for Science started on Earth Day, April 22, 2017, when demonstrators around the world participated in a March for Science in a call to support and safeguard the scientific community, fact-based decision making, basic research, and freedom of speech for scientists. Poets for Science founder, poet and environmental spokesperson Jane Hirshfield, along with the Wick Poetry Center, joined the marchers at the Teach-In on the National Mall.

Since 2017, Poets for Science has traveled as an interactive exhibit and makerspace to universities, museums, and conferences and collaborated with organizations and individuals to further explore the intersection of art and science and bring poetry to the most urgent and evolving needs of our climate crisis through expressive writing interventions, interactive exhibits, and digital platforms.

Science Advisers

Dr. Aimee A. Norton, Senior Research Scientist, Stanford University, Solar Physics Group

Dr. Ryan McGranaghan, Data Scientist and Research Scientist, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory

Dr. Donald M. Hassler, Science Program Director, Southwest Research Institute

Supported by

Collaborative Partners