Poetry: “The tenured faculty meets to discuss the Moon’s campus visit”
This poem was originally published in Mythic Delirium 25, Dec. 2011.
The tenured faculty meets to discuss the Moon’s campus visit
by Rose Lemberg
1. I vote against this candidate. The powerpoint
shone only with reflected light, and the citations
obscured by clouds, illuminated nothing.
2. Celestial bodies – that is, satellites – are unfaithful: they wander,
leaving lightweight planets
for heftier ones. We do not want
our graduate students, overcome by longing,
to tear away, and shoot into the sky,
and tumble back as wailing meteors.
I vote no.
3. The candidate is made of cheese. Do we really want this in the department?
4. Not for nothing, the Moon
causes tidal waves. Would
a good colleague do this?
Not even to mention
menopause, menstruation, Freud,
and the issue of moonshine.
5. The Moon, as you well know,
orbits the earth. Have you considered
the two-body problem? Normally, the college
would find accommodation, but the budget crisis has depleted
the supply of stardust in the dean’s pockets.
6. The Moon’s research appears
to be plagiarized from the Sun.
7. I heard that the candidate
brought the candidate-Hare and the Man who Lives on the candidate
secretly, to the campus visit. In the evening
they floated across the hotel lobby, causing panic
to diners, and an accidental damage bill.
8. I vote we hire the Moon: who else would hold
office hours at night, when the library blooms
with desperate students? Imagine how,
peeking into the windows, Professor Moon will quote
Christina Rosetti, P.B. Shelley, Rumi,
and the Chicago Manual of Style. It’s the Moon who makes
lovers stay up all night, and the shells sing – clearly,
students love her. I suggest we restore
brilliance as a professional criterion – even when inconstant,
pockmarked or marred by clouds, even waning
to nothing – it will wax, I believe,
back to fullness. And so I vote yes.