Verse – James Patrick Kelly

The Two Cultures

for John Swope

The scientist says
that all that we know exploded
from an inscrutable spark.
The universe swelled like a bubble.
Galaxies clumped and swirled.
Planets danced around a yellow sun.
Rain scattered across breeding seas.
The scientist says
that the spark that made the stars
made us.

The artist asks
that we pause some night beside the water
and feel the restless sky teaching
the stars within us.
There is only one commandment:
create, create.
That's why we cling to each other
and make new worlds with our bodies.
The artist asks only
that we honor the spark.

- James Patrick Kelly

Issac Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine, Vol. 16 No. 6, May 1992, p. 61.