Dreaming of Io

by Marina Lee Sable

I'm on a mountain top.
Sulfur falls like snowflakes
and settles on the slope
like sparkling brown and white sugar
reflecting the shimmering aurora
of vacillating scrims above me.

A blue plume drifts up from a vent
like a colossal genie
released from its bottle.

Jupiter fires a thunderbolt
through the ether
triggering Pele to protest.
Her fiery vapors of dragon's breath
fracture the mountainside
and roll like Vermont syrup
into the mouth of Hades.

Silicate rocks ascend
from the mantle
forming a towering mass
of alien architecture
housing the iridescent ghosts
of a lost civilization.

Charged particles fill the air
in a kaleidoscopic mist.
Moving in slow motion,
I drift on neon waves glowing
in the rays of the sun,
melting, taking me with them.
A neon dust stream
accelerating in the magnetosphere
and flung out into space.

Copyright © 2004, Marina Lee Sable

Io in front of Jupiter

Marina Lee Sable's poetry has recently been published in Tangled, The Fifth Di..., Twilight Times, Scifaikuest, Aoife's Kiss, and other magazines.

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Image courtesy of NASA/JPL/University of Arizona