It wasn’t your fault

It wasn’t your choice

Heat and fear and suffocating metal

The universe’s reward for being kind


Your first breath, in some alley somewhere

Your last, in the darkest pit science could throw you

Were you happy? Did you trust them?

Even if you had known, would it have mattered?


The public looked on for weeks, pointing you out in the sky

Was it enough, their excitement? Did it keep your ghost alive?

It is not their fault they pointed, they thought it was still you up there

It is not your fault it wasn’t, I’m sure you would have stayed if you could have


But first, gravity releases its hold on you


You play

For the first time, you get to play

You are weightless, and you are free, and you are Laika


And then the heat,

And then the door stays ever-closed

They watch from a room millions of miles away as your heart rate speeds up

They will not come to get you


They were never going to get you



For five months you were a shape

In a spinning metal can, and that was progress

For ten days you were something to look for in the sky

For five hours you were a cosmonaut


And then five months later your tomb plummeted into the ocean 

And the atmosphere clawed you to shreds

And the Earth that had borne you would not let you home


You did not get flowers, you did not get a bed

Ash and ice and floating in one dark, starless cosmos

I hope the stars welcomed you back, once your body had gone

I hope that they were kind to you


It is not your fault 

It is not your choice

There is stardust in your veins

I hope they string you up a constellation

  • Author: pots-and-pans (Offline Offline)
  • Published: January 31st, 2024 07:18
  • Comment from author about the poem: This is an older poem about Laika, the first dog in space. I thought it'd be nice to show my progress considering I haven't posted since I was thirteen! Hi guys :)
  • Category: Sad
  • Views: 2
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