‘Not for Sale, Used Asteroid, One Owner’, Mary Soon Lee

Illustrations © 2021 Fluffgar

 [ Shrine tomb, © 2021 Fluffgar ] One owner, matriarch of the commune
who mined this main-belt asteroid,

hollowing hallways to carve a home
in a misshapen metallic lump of rock,

trading platinum, palladium, rhodium
for orchids and ornamental goldfish.

A moderately eccentric collective
prizing fragrance and form over gold:

recycled air freighted with vanilla,
dragon-eyed fish in wall aquaria,

even the toddlers taught to assess
aquaponic filters, seals, pumps.

One owner, now deceased, gray hair
enthroned in tiny platinum lockets

worn by those seeking new lodging,
this flower-strewn rock her tomb.

© 2021 Mary Soon Lee

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