Find some attractive planets
and tie yarn around their moons
to mark them for later.

If one snaps easily in half,
the planets are ready to pick. Remove
all the dried ones, place them

in a paper bag. Remove the seeds
from their orbits by cracking
with a fingernail. Pour the seeds

into a box, place them in a warm spot.
Shake once a millennium.
Pour the dried cosmos seeds

inside an envelope, fold over the flap,
place in a clean screw-top jar
until ready for planting. Start seeds indoors,

before the last frost. Planets sown
in outer space will quickly catch up. Water
copiously. Better luck this time.

Sharon Black is from Glasgow and lives in a remote valley of the CĂ©vennes mountains of France. Her poetry is published widely in the UK and she has won many prizes for her work, including the Guernsey International Poetry Competition 2019 and The London Magazine Poetry Prizes 2019 and 2018. She is editor of Pindrop Press. Her two collections are To Know Bedrock (Pindrop, 2011) and The Art of Egg (Two Ravens, 2015; Pindrop, 2019). A pamphlet, Rib, will appear with Wayleave Press in 2021 and her third full collection with Drunk Muse Press in 2022.