"A Safe Distance": a poem by Jamie McKendrick

If the moon were closer, quite apart
from disasters it would wreak on earth,
how soon before that chiaroscuro,
the light-splashed pores and shadowy pits,
engrossing so much of the night sky
and dimming half the constellations,
would start to pall? By the same rule
the distance that divides us seems
providentially assigned so that
from here you still look radiant, majestic.

This article first appeared in the 26 November 2012 issue of the New Statesman, What is Israel thinking?