We think the stars are shy; their time in our sight, fleeting. Shine your lights and they hide. It will take darkness to coax them to burn. We think the stars are shy, reading of them in well-lit rooms, dreaming of them with our eyes shut. The stars are not shy; they are screaming. They are streaking and shooting, they are shining and shouting. They are telling stories to you. They are telling you where to go.
Long ago, your great-grandfathers looked upon those same stars. Long ago, the stars were as they still are. One star to you is another star to me. Be the bear Callisto, if you believe. Be the Dipper a bear chased by Natives. Be the autumn reds the poor bear’s blood, fallen to earth.
The stars are not shy. They have eons of stories to tell. They have nations of prayers within their palms. They have seen war, they have seen love. They have seen your wars, they have seen your loves. They have seen each tear cried on a rooftop. They have walked each honeymoon stroll. They know your father and your mother. They know your best friend and your brother. They are close friends to the sun and to the moon. In the same way, they are close friends to you. Let them be this, as they are.
The stars are of God’s eyes. They are of God’s ears. They are of God’s word, that even in darkness, He is. They are a promise to North. They are the poets’ muse. They dance in the artists’ dreams. To some they are faith. To some they are hope. To some they are infinity. To some they are perspective. Distance. Togetherness. We have seen the same stars, you and I, our brothers of this earth. And they have seen us each.
Follow the Drinking Gourd, to the North, to onward, to a better life. Pray for Callisto. Pray for Arcus, her boy. Pray for the dog, he is hungry. Pray for the hare, he is hunted. Pray for the stars who fall. Pray that those who shoot do not do so in vain.
Listen to the stars. They speak a sign language, a star language. They speak every language. They are loud if you let them be. They are loud if you find a good place to listen. Do not waste yourself stowed away each night. Listen to the stars. Let them come to know you, as they have known each man, and each woman. Tell them of your plights. Tell them of your hopes. Tell them of those whom you love. Tell them stories, too. The stars love stories. Do not forget to listen to the stars. You may ask the stars, “am I lost?” Listen to the stars. They will tell you the truth.
Do not fear the stars and their shifting. They pace and misplace each season. Trust the stars. They are where they must be. If you think you have lost them, if you think they have left you, fear not: the stars do not forget. They do not leave. They pace and they travel, and they learn what they can learn. The stars have many homes. Maybe you know of some, maybe you know of one. Fear not the stars and their shifting. Whatever home of theirs you know, they shall return to it. Do not give up on the stars. They will never give up on you.
Listen to the stars. Ask the stars, “are you here? Am I lost?” Tell the stars, “do not leave me.” Tell the stars, “help me.” Tell the stars, “thank you.” Ask the stars for their wisdom. It is ancient. It is eternal. The stars walk the heavens. The stars are good, and they know good. Listen to the stars. They will tell you the truth.