It’s not in a far distant galaxy.
It’s less than a thousand light years away –
This gassy rope of stellar nursery
a sine wave, crisscrossing our Milky Way.
Nine thousand light years long, not far from Earth,
astronomers today just noticed it.
Although parts of it were seen giving birth,
our optics needed refining a bit
to see this cosmic serpent in 4-D,
determining its size and shape and when
it last passed our local vicinity
(in Earth years, that’s roughly thirteen million).
Igniting, making our night sky more starred,
it, nonetheless, was missed, in our backyard.