“Nebula” by Yakov Azriel

You needn’t be afraid, I know the way
to keep a secret and I haven’t said
a word to anyone about the bed
we shared last night.  In fact, how can I say
a word when adjectives and nouns obey
the laws of physics, while desire has led
us to a nebula where verbs have fled
beyond those laws which ruled till yesterday.

What terminology defines the white,
candescent light that filled our room, the star
which suddenly appeared, the star we made?
No modifier can describe how bright
our pulsing supernova was — there are
no words at all, you needn’t be afraid.


Yakov Azriel was born in New York and came to live in Israel at the age of 21.  He has published five full-length books of poetry in the US, the latest being Closet Sonnets: The Life of G.S. Crown (1950-2021), which was published by Sheep Meadow Press in November 2017.  Over 300 of his poems have been published in journals and magazines in the US, the UK, Israel and online.  In addition, his poems have won twenty-four prizes in international poetry competitions. He has seven children, and only very recently has he emerged from his closet.