-by Andrei Dorian Gheorghe-

Perseid Meteor over Mountain Cindrel (Romania)
Photo: Valentin Grigore


In the autumn of 2010 I have to commemorate
one year since the departure of my mother
Steliana Gheorghe (1934 May 18 - 2009 October 1)
and three years since the departure of my father
Costica Gheorghe (1927 May 24 - 2007 November 26),
and I have thought to do this by re-publishing together
7 articles which preceded or were connected to the
Meteor Contemporary Poetry Project,
the first regular astropoetry project patronized by a
world astronomical entity,
International Meteor Organization.
A project with anthologies published in the electronic archive of the IMO,
and for which my partners in coordination were
Alastair McBeath (UK, Vice-President of IMO)
and Valentin Grigore (President of SARM).

5 of those articles were first published by the IMO
(3 of them being re-published later in the
Digital Library of NASA/Harvard/Smithsonian),
and 2 of them by the Science Fiction Poetry Association.

Since the support of my parents was decisive for all I created,
I dedicate the collection bellow to their memory.

Steliana and Costica Gheorghe - Youth Years

Stars dance in the sky
And people dance on Earth
The dance of the falling stars.

-Andrei Dorian Gheorghe-

Two Falling Stars, Perseids 2010
Photo: Florian Ispas



-Andrei Dorian Gheorghe-

(first published in Proceedings of the International Meteor Conference
Stara Lesna, Slovakia, 20-23 August, 1998)

Balls from the forehead of the Great Spirit
Rush out to seize brightness

Small spirits camouflaged
In rude matter

Ciphered messages
Of Infinite Creation
Becoming science

Welcome, meteors!

Welcome, suicides of light!

(Andrei Dorian Gheorghe)

Is meteor poetry a deviation or distraction from meteor astronomy?
Possibly for some.
Is meteor poetry a secondary component of meteor astronomy?
Why not?
Here are a few arguments to demonstrate this.

1. The greatest popularizer of astronomy of all time,
the Frenchman Camille Flammarion
used many lyrics about the Cosmos,
composed by ancient and contemporary poets,
to adorn his descriptions of the universe.
His example was followed by the greatest Romanian popularizer of astronomy,
Victor Anestin,
and today by magazines like “Popular Astronomy” in the UK,
the annual “Astronomical Calendar” by Guy Ottewell in the USA,
and the magazine “Noi si Cerul” in Romania.

2. Throughout world history, meteors were not only a scientific phenomenon,
but also a cultural one.
For instance, they were present in myths,
or in lyrics composed by important poets such as Georg Trakl in Austria,
Guillaume Apollinaire in France, Jorge Louis Borges in Argentina, etc.

3. That magnificent spirit in meteor astronomy,
the Englishman W. F. Denning,
composed the wonderful poem “Falling Stars”.

4. Only meteor astronomy can be practised without instruments today,
with just the unaided eye,
leaving pure the relationship between man and Cosmos,
which is in essence a poetic one.

5. This argument will be a longer one.
In two previous articles (Gheorghe and McBeath, 1998a and b),
Alastair McBeath and I tried to point out a few meteoric aspects
from Romanian poetry.
I think this theme could be continued as follows:

a) Meteors were present in other lyrics composed by
the greatest Romanian poets in the 19th century:

Ioan Heliade Radulescu
(“Brave fiery Cherub,/…/
My soul sees you in every meteor.”);

Vasile Alecsandri
(“Look at the proud treasure of the night,/
Leaving to snow stars from it,/
From every soul which flies in the sky/
A star comes down slowly.”);

the national poet Mihai Eminescu
(“Stars fall and break other worlds…”);

and Alexandru Macedonski
(“To go to the ether with tears of stars,/
And to meet mutinous comets…”);

b) Very important poets in the first part of the 20th century
also wrote lyrics about meteors:

Octavian Goga
(“Up there, travelling stars/ Like some slanderous girls/
Carried my sigh to the wind…”);

George Bacovia
(“With the star which was detached,/ Dying now in Chaos,/
Perhaps a heart was extinguished/ To its eternal repose.”);

Aron Cotrus
(“Grizzly fireballs, carrying death,/
Roaring, covered the air of the night…”);

Dan Botha
(“Sidereal meteors, vast powders,/ Supernatural aurorae/
Waving among chaste stars…”);

Ion Pillat
(“Stars arrived, riding rainbows…”);

Ion Barbu, alias the mathematician Dan Barbilian
(“Did you see?/ A star died./…/
A crushed star sucked by abysses.”);

and especially Lucian Blaga
in his short poem “Celestial Touch”
(“What an apparition!
O, what a light!
A star fell in my garden!
Not sought for, not waited for,
Good fortune, arrow, flower and fire.
In the high herb, in a big silk,
It fell from from the house of the century.
O, a star came back to the world!
My hands are burnt by it.”).

c) In 1973, Petre Vlad, alias Dominic Diamant, published “The Ballad of the Shooting Star”
in the principal Romanian cultural magazine, “Literary Romania”:

“Shooting star I’ll be lost in the flow of Genesis/
Just like a thrill absorbed by an infinite song…”

Gains for astronomy?
These lyrics attract attention to meteoric phenomena,
represent an enrichment of their description,
and touch upon some mythological aspects (see Gheorghe and McBeath, 1998b).

6. Here I will tell a story which represents the passage
from contemplative Romanian meteor poetry
to astronomical Romanian meteor poetry.
In 1995 I was invited to produce an astropoetry recital
at the national astronomical event PERSEIDE, organized by the SARM
(Romanian Society for Meteors and Astronomy).
The success of this event among the young astronomers was so surprising
that in 1996, the SARM President Valentin Grigore and I decided
to organize a Cosmopoetry Festival also at PERSEIDE.
This initially timid idea has so far been realized at three PERSEIDE events:
a one-day Festival lasting five hours in 1996;
a two-day Festival lasting seven hours daily in 1997;
and a four-day Festival in 1998.
Now, the Cosmopoetry Festival is enriched by an Astroart Showroom,
and contains not only astropoetry but also astronomical drama,
humour, sculpture, cartoons, photography, film, photo-origami,
mythological and computer graphics, an astrofashion show,
space and folk music, some parts of these beginning in 1995.
It was remarkable that during this time, people and contributions came from
Sweden, Britain, Ireland, Malta, the USA, Holland, Canada, Bulgaria, India,
France, Germany, and other places, as well as Romania.

Obviously, meteors were in the centre of this Festival,
and the poetical movement which was created
(very strongly accented towards the astronomical point of view)
can be characterized as coming from many directions, as follows:

a) School pupils.
Examples of meteor lyrics (part of them haikus) included those from

Paul Boboc
(“Transient meteor -
A whisper of comet
Between the sky and man.”);

Ovidiu Cioroianu
(“A living light
Coming down among people -
short awakening.”)

Sergiu Dobos
(“I saw you, wild fireball,/ Beautiful like the pain/
Of a sunset…”);

Izabela Boros
(“Now, that the last fireball / Crossed the canopy of heaven…/
Now, that the last star/ Had its fall…/
I’m waiting for the Universe’s/ Mute answer.”);

Anca Buhus
(“Scared by Canes Venatici/ The white meteor/
Runs horror-stricken.”);

Adrian Sima
(“Fugitive meteor -/ Perspiration of an/
Exhausted comet.”)

Catalina Mitrut
(“Tears of the Universe/ Were cried from a gap/
To one another.”);

Diana Maria Ogescu
(“Universal tramps -/ Meteoroids were in a hurry/
To come down on Earth,/ To catch fire from joy.”);

Mariana Zarnescu
(“Glow-worms of the Sky/ Hallowed with tears/
The Christian Earth.”).

b) Leaders of the SARM and observers from the VMDB
of the International Meteor Organization:

Valentin Grigore
(Deep sky…/ identical after years and years./
But for a meteor…/ the second is important.”);

Vasile Micu
(“Ephemeral glow-worm of the sky/
Crossing its roads…”);

Lucian Boboc
(“What can I do with you,/ Meteor inhaled/
By a suicidal planet?”);

Gelu-Claudiu Radu
(“Don’t forget! You are a mortal!/
Life is like a meteor…”);

Adrian Negoescu
(“A hurried meteor/ From a passing comet;/
Thank you, Swift-Tuttle!”);

the most complex Romanian astro-artist
Dan Mitrut
(Meteors - crusades/ Of the galactic children/
Hitting the Earth…”);

And the mathematician-analyst
Stefan Berinde
(“I am a little meteor and search/
An astral happiness…”).

c) Other astropoets, including

Victor Chifelea
(“Gulping at a supper/
The postulate of the perennial meteors…”);

Vicenzio Ichim
(“Perseus bequeathes/ His own force/
Conceiving himself.”);

Constantin Dumitrecu-Cunctator
(“Meteors carry hurried relay-races/
To stars…”);

d) Astronomy professors, including

Dimitrie Olenici
(“The astronomers count crazy stars/
All night long…”)

and Virgil V. Scurtu
(“Under the shadow of Perseus/
We are organizing…”).

Astronomical gains?
Joy and relaxation for astronomers, many broadcasts
on radio and television to popularize astronomy,
making people want to know more about meteors.


In 1999, Romania will have the best position for observing
a unique astronomical phenomenon:
a total solar eclipse almost coincident
with the maximum of the Perseids.
The Cosmopoetry Festival will become a large international one.
But we will know that all this has begun from the beauty of the
wonderful meteors.


I wish to thank especially Alastair McBeath and Godfrey Baldacchino
for their permanent support and encouragement.
Also, many thanks to Jurgen Rendtel and Robert Lunsford
who wished us success in this field.

All the English language translations from Romanian texts used here
were specially prepared by the author.

-Calinescu, G.. (1982), The History of Romanian Literature,
Minerva Publishing House, Bucharest, Romania (in Romanian).
-Dima, A. (1982), The Cosmic Vision in Romanian Poetry.
Junimea Publishing House, Iasi, Romania (in Romanian).
-Gheorghe, A.D., McBeath, A. (1998a). The Importance of the Magazine Orion
in Early East-European Meteor Work. WGN 26, 35-39.
-Gheorghe, A.D., McBeath, A. (1998b). Romanian Meteor Mythology.
In A. Knoffel, A.McBeath (eds.), Proceedings IMC Petnica 1997, 62-88,
Potsdam, Germany. International Meteor Organization.
-Holban, I. (1991), Sun, Moon, Evening Star.
Hyperion Publishing House, Chisinau, Moldavian Republic (in Romanian).
-Manolescu, N. (1968), Romanian Modern Poetry.
Publishing House for Literature, Bucharest, Romania (in Romanian).
-The magazine “Noi si Cerul” and its astropoetical supplements (1996-1998),
SARM, Romania.
Piru, A., Serb, I. (1976). Romanian Classical Poetry. Minerva Publishing House,
Bucharest, Romania (in Romanian).

Welcome, meteors!
Men called by the cosmic jewels
Appear in proud groups

They arrange
Telescopes, clocks, dictaphones
They note
Magnitude, time, color
They measure
The state of the Universe

Planetary traditions
For celestial favors!

(Andrei Dorian Gheorghe)

Targoviste 1996.
Andrei Dorian Gheorghe gives a diploma to the first youth laureate
of SARM’s Cosmopoetry Festival, Lucian Boboc
Photo: Victor Bortas



-Andrei Dorian Gheorghe-

(first published in Star*Line
- the Journal of the Science Fiction Poetry Association -
23:6 November-December 2000)

On April 2000, between 16 and 19, NASA and SETI Institute
organized at the Tel-Aviv University, Israel,
the international workshop Leonid MultiInstrument Aircraft Campaign,
dedicated to the last major outbursts of the Leonid meteor shower
(1998 and 1999).
About 60 scientists, professional and amateur astronomers, professors
and meteor observers from North America, Europe, Japan and Israel
offered a fascinating astronomical show, dissecting this meteor shower
on very many scientifical ways.
Here, the Romania Society for Meteors and Astronomy (SARM)
realized a poster with photographs and observation results
by Valentin Grigore (their president)
and a corner of Leonid art: drawings, computer art, other photos
and a Leonid poetry anthology, including works by 15 Romanian astropoets

(see review this issue -
written in the page 10 by the Editor of Star*Line:

Review by - David C Kopaska-Merkel

(astropoetry anthology realized by members of the SARM -
Romanian Society for Meteors and Astronomy -
for Leonid MAC Workshop 2000,
or Leonid observations made by the eyes of the soul),
translated into English by Andrei Dorian Gheorghe.
1 pg.
No price or publisher info., but I imagine you could get Leonids
from Andrei Dorian Gheorghe. (…)
Andrei will probably send you more than just this one publication,
because he is a tireless proponent of astropoetry in general
and meteor poetry in particular.
This anthology contains 22 very short poems by 15 Romanian poets,
all in English translation.
Many names will be familiar if you have read other Romanian astropoetry:
contributors include the editor, Valentin Grigore, and Dan Mitrut.
The longest poem is 6 lines and the shortest 2,
so the entire publication easily fits on one A4 page
(I think that’s what it is).
Much Romanian astropoetry seems rather naïve
to the long-time readers of western SF poetry,
but some of these short poems are truly beautiful.
Here are a few examples:

Andrei Dorian Gheorghe:

Fragments of fire
From the roar of the Lion;
Alarm in the sky.

Tina Visarian:

I gladly looked at the wave
Of the blazes coming to me
And I felt myself sinking
In the meteoric sea.

Diana Maria Ogescu:

Meteor shower in a test tube -
In the Leonid isle
Every inhabitant tattoos in his palm
A small universe;
But their comet was disintegrated
Into a meteor shower.

To my knowledge, the Romanian organization SARM
is the world’s only organization devoting much effort
to the publication of astropoetry.
Romanian astropoets are quite prolific, and Andrei Dorian Gheorghe is eager
to correspond with anyone outside Romania who is interested in meteors,
poetry and other arts, and especially the interface between the two.)

This anthology was the basis for a performance (directed by me) given by
the SARM delegation on April 17, after the festive dinner,
at the Maganda restaurant.
Moments of poetry recitation on the sound of a tape
with Romanian electronic music, interspersed by moments of mask dumb-show
(I and Valentin Grigore playing the battle between
Hercules and the Lion of Nemea - the last of them reviving as a constellation
and meteor radiant -, Meteor Morgana, Zenith Hourly Rate,
the Waltz of a lost Leonid…)
I finished this spectacle interpreting my own Leonid tipuritura
(the shortest Romania poetic form):

Leonid shower, attire
My soul from your divine fire!

Andrei Dorian Gheorghe and Valentin Grigore
in the park of Tel Aviv University (Israel),
host of NASA’s Leonid MAC Campaign, April 2000


IMC 2000, Pucioasa, Romania, September 21-24

-Andrei Dorian Gheorghe-

(first published in Star*Line
- the Journal of the Science Fiction Poetry Association -
24:2 March-April 2001)

The 2000 International Meteor Conference was organized by the SARM
(Romanian Society for Meteors and Astronomy)
at the Cultural Centre of the coquettish small town of Pucioasa
(near the Capathian Mountains),
receiving over 90 participants representing 14 countries from 3 continents.

There were presented work papers, posters, video films, slide talks
and workshops about important meteor showers:
Leonids, Perseids, Delphinids, Alpha Capricornids, Taurids, etc.,
including observational analyses, predictions, astrophysics, history,
mythology, radio astronomy, software, etc., in some cases
the works being expanded through connections to
comets, asteroids, solar eclipses, Moon, Aurora Borealis.
Benefiting by the position of host, the SARM initiated an original
Romanian National Meteor Showroom (including almost all
the Romanian meteor photos, meteors in old chronicles, mythology,
old poetry, church ornaments and icons,
the first Romanian observations of meteors, contemporary drawings,
sculptures, poems, computer art, pictures, photo-origami small houses,
special remarks being for the exhibits of Dan Mitrut
and Valentin Grigore - the main organizer of this conference.
Also, based on the success of their previous poetic shows at the IMCs,
and on their organizational experience from 5 yearly Cosmopoetry Festivals
(for instance the 4th edition, in the English language,
dedicated sections to all heavenly bodies),
the SARM realized for 2 evenings (September 21 and 23),
a short international festival of meteor poetry and art,
in which they read out meteor verse
by David Kopaska-Merkel, Florentin Smarandache, Teddi Rose,
Victoria Tarrani, Neca Stoller, Rosa Sprinkle, Melanie Webb (USA),
Kenneth Drysdale (Canada), Giovanni Malito (Ireland),
Damien Simon (France), Peter Dalakov, Krasimir Manov (Bulgaria),
Sue Mill, Malcolm Miller (Australia), Steve Sneyd, John Francis Haines,
Gerald England, Alastair McBeath, Paul Reece (U.K.),
a part of “Romanian army” of meteor poets reciting themselves
their own poems
(Andrei Dorian Gheorghe - director of this festival -, Dan Mitrut,
Valentin Grigore, Diana Maria Ogescu, Tina Visarian, Adrian Sima,
Iulian Olaru, Ionel Catalin Diaconu, Gelu Claudiu Radu, Dimitrie Olenici,
Ionut Dumitrache, Emanuela Ignatoiu-Sora, Elena Sorescu).
Nagatoshi Nogami (Japan) recited a waka from Ryonjinhisho
(edited in the XIIth century),
and the program was completed by Romanian live recitals of
meteor electronic music and meteor folk music (Dan Mitrut),
dumbshows by Andrei Dorian Gheorghe,
two Romanian folkloric moments with cosmic valences,
and a short meteor musical drama by the same Dan Mitrut
(singing at flute, fish scale, panpipe, guitar and voice).
An excellent surprise was offered by the famous meteor scientist,
Dr. David Asher from Armagh Observatory (Northern Ireland),
who recited his own meteor limericks, and,
after the festival, one of the leaders of the International Meteor Organization,
Rainer Arlt (Germany),
gave a piano recital.
Every participant received a copy of the 2000 anthology
“Romanian Contemporary Astropoetry and Its Guests”, edited by SARM.
Finally, I would say that that the most amusing moment was
the last dumshow, Meteor Morgana, on Romanian, electronic music,
from which I’ll present my introductory verse
(in fact, a falling haiku):

Meteor Morgana

It is worth to die
following her through the
celestial desert

Romanian astropoets and actors
(Ionel Catalin Diaconu, Gelu-Claudiu Radu,
Andrei Dorian Gheorghe, Valentin Grigore, Monica Nastase,
Dan Mitrut, Iulian Olaru, Danut Ionescu)
on the stage of the IMC 2000 Astropoetry Show
Photo: Casper ter Kuile (Holland)



-Andrei Dorian Gheorghe-

(first published in Proceedings of the International Meteor Conference
Frombork, Poland, 26-29 September 2002)


A summary of meteor poetry from around the world is presented.
Brief samples from the work of many meteor poets are presented.

The Fireball

There was a meteoroid wishing to love a planet.
There was a meteoroid wishing to die for a planet.

“Terra is the most beautiful space girl!”

a fireball is dancing with a planet
his luminous waltz
of love and death.

-Andrei Dorian Gheorghe-

Since 1995, IMO has opened large gates for meteor poetry,
and, for the last five-year period of the second millennium,
I found a few zones in the map of this kind of creation,
which has been extended since 2001.
(But this will be another story).

Thus, in East Europe, the Bulgarian Astroclub “Canopus” in Varna
produced two real meteor poets, and amateur astronomers too,
who wrote about meteor showers.
They are Krasimir Manov
(“Casiopeids -/
There are so many of them/ Helter-skelter they fall/
But why should I watch/ When IMO doesn’t care about them at all.”)
and Peter Dalakov
(“Leonids - a fake trademark/ Leonids - beastly cold,/
Leonids - you catch the small pox/ Leonids - the chattering of teeth rolls.”)

In continental Western Europe, another amateur astronomer
wrote humorously about meteors.
He is the Frenchman Damien Simon
(“I was there to look at a meteor,/
And after a few beers I saw many more.”)

In spite of the rather weather cloudy,
the United Kingdom gave pieces of meteor poetry from different worlds.
Let’s see about the authors.

A personality in poetry and poetry web design,
Gerald England
(“behind the jet/
streams of meteors -/
night-time landings.”);

The main organizers of British Science Fiction poetry,
Steve Sneyd
(“star come visiting/
child’s told to wish on: in plough/
grown up fused space seed”)
and John Francis Haines
(“The first crash woke us. Through the curtains/
Fireballs gloved and crumped in the distance.”);

Other poets:
Paul Reece
(“I felt exalted/ To be answered/
By the meteoric thoughts/ Of our extra-celestial conjurer.”),
Ken Cheslin (1937-2000),
who wrote about the great November meteor shower
(“the Leonids/ years in millions/
dark cold miles in billions/ one bright silent flash/
and Dawn Hogarth Burton
(“Godspit of the firmament/ Flashing fires that rake/
The coaldust darkness/ Of a winter night.”).

Two important astronomers in the meteor world,
Dr. David Asher,
famous Leonid predictor, who wrote meteor limericks
(“You face quite a serious restriction/
If you publish a meteor prediction,/
Because if you are wrong,/
It sure won’t be long/
Before all your work’s treated as fiction.”)
and Alastair Mcbeath,
vice-president of the IMO, who wrote about a possible sky meeting
between the Perseid meteor shower and a total solar eclipse in 1999
(“We will briefly see both the Eclipse-Dragon and the Hydra-Dragon’s Head./
Will it take the gleam of a Perseid meteor/
from dragon-slaying Perseus’ Sword Handle/ to scare both dragons from the sky/
and let the sun blaze forth again/
as it should on an August mid-morning?”).

Near to the UK, an Irish editor, Govanni Malito, wrote meteor haikus
(“a meteor streaks/
through my depth of dark night -/
will it grant my wish?”),

Near to Europe, an Israeli journalist,
George Ney,
wrote a prose poem about Genesis, including meteors
(“Among these weapons, perhaps the least important of them, were meteors,
which they hurled at each other across the parsecs of Space.”)

Overseas, in North America, there is also a remarkable variety of poets
writing about the meteors:

The main editor of Science Fiction poetry,
David Kopaska-Merkel
(‘Meteor morning -/ how far you travelled/
you burned swiftly from the dawn/ a spring sky arrow.”);

The founder of the Paradoxistic Literary Movement (born in Romania),
Florentin Smarandache,
who wrote paradoxistic meteor distichs
(“A falling star/
Among rising clouds”)

Some young poets from Warren Wilson College in Asheville, North Carolina:
Rosa Sprinkle
(“Make a wish on a shooting star/
Or just admire from afar.”),
Melanie Webb
(“Meteors/ shower for hours through the quiet earth-skies./
White and coloured streaks of light/ opening wide the four in the morning eyes/
from the Earth’s still ground.”),
Kate Goodwin
(“With Brae in mind/ this starshower makes me wonder/
if he ever lost himself to star desire.”).
All of them are students in the astronomy class of
Professor Donald Collins
(participant in 1998 and 1999 at the Cosmopoetry Festival in Romania);

A poet published on a NASA web site,
Phil Thrieb
(“But meteor showers are regular/ Like clockwork they appear/
And sometimes they get bigger/ And then get small, for years.”);

Three haiku authors,
Victoria Tarrani
(“comets gather dust/
blazing the sky with bright light/
writers capture stars”),
Teddi Rose
(“burning meteor/
atmosphere embraces/
another strike”)
and the Canadian Keneth Drysdale
(“Blazing meteor/
Earth twinkles in other skies -/
Dead world touches life.”)

Two Science Fiction poets, one from USA:
Neca Stoller,
who wrote about the impacts on the Moon
(“On a landscape of absence,/
impact shadows bulge and slip…”),
and one from Canada:
Nancy Bennet
(“Here in the darkest of darkest night/
while we count our chickens, hatched and unborn hot waves,/
cold clouds in last breath from the meteor lover.”).

In the Southern Hemisphere, Australia seems to be the most important
producer of meteor poetry, through a haiku author,
Sue Mill
(“watching a meteor pass/
through the cherry blossoms/
a fragrant breeze”)
and a Leonid poet,
Malcolm Miller
(“Speeding specks of unknown stuff/ might light the sky,/
diverging in silent lines,/ some short, some long,/
across clear skies.”).

But surely the number of meteor poets in the world for this period of time
could be much bigger…

Back in Europe,
this literary phenomenon is spread widely across Romania,
which has created a “meteor and astro” poetry movement through
the Romanian Society for Meteors and Astronomy - SARM.
It produces meteor poets from young astronomers,
attracts meteor poetry from the literary world,
organizes contests and festivals of “meteor and astro” poetry,
puts meteor verse on music, in dramas, or
near meteor photos, drawings, collages and sculptures,
and edits an annual English astropoetry anthology
(for which meteor poets from all over the world are invited
as special guests) - launched at the IMO conferences
and usually well commented on in the international literary world.
The list of Romanian meteor poets is impressive,
and can be divided in three generations:

1. Old sky lovers and poets (over 70 years old):
Constantin Dumitrescu-Cunctator
(“For you, my dear,/
I’ll be a meteor from the shadow of forgetfulness…”),
Michaela Al. Orescu
(“infernal fireball/
humiliated the light/
of proud Venus”)
Zigmund Tauberg
(“Many meteors, in the clear nights,/ Appear on trajectories of light,/
And I watch, in the living nights,/ The silver trails coming to us/
Like an attitude/ Sent by the Universe.”),
Dominic Diamant
(“Pure seeds rustling of splendour…/
Tracer atoms in a sidereal war…/
A flourish of vibrating diamonds…-/

2. The middle generation, composed of
(a) especially from amateur and professional astronomers, on one side, and
(b) technicians with humanistic aptitudes, on the other side:

(a) Valentin Grigore
(“Flights of lights,/ Whispers of stars,/
The sky in the night/ Embracing the Earth.”),
Stefan Berinde
(“The ephemeral comet was dying/ in the fire of the close greedy star./
Bathed by a rain of falling stars,/ the exalted planet said:/
<Thank you, comet, for sacrificing your matter./
For a moment, my solitude disappeared.>”),
Dimitrie Olenici
(“O, you, dear Perseids!/
O, crystal night!/
O, sacred temple of Urania…”),
Ovidiu Vaduvescu
(“My love, I candidly and sensibly gave you/
a bouquet of meteors.”),
Vasile Micu
(“A meteor furrows a mountain,/ an idea crosses my mind:/
I see myself on the Universe’s paths,/ a skiman on its snows.”),
Marius Visinescu
(“The whisper of the summer evenings/ comes down slowly and deafly/
with rains of meteors/ left by Perseus/
in the sphere of my sky.”),
Sandu Marcu
(“When you die/ burning in the sky,/
what are your words,/ old meteor?/
How much I’d like to know your story!”).

(b) Mircea Alexandru Popa
(“The night comes to me/ with shouts of owl./
Under my shadow,/ the night is bent/
by heavenly bodies and meteor showers.”),
Victor Chifelea
(“Arrest that meteor, that light,/
Not to burn the Earth on its flight.”),
Mihai Dumitrescu
(‘I stay alone near the stone/
fallen form somewhere from infinity/ and ask it what it saw/
through the starry dust…”),
Lucian Ionescu
(“Fireballs and meteors always flashing./
Why did I hide my head?/ I could catch them!”),
Vicenzio Ichim
(“New waves of fireballs are dying on premature beaches./
The world’s face is decomposed into a dream,/
and pure tears are flowing, shining…”),
Constantin Huth
(“Skating among the destinies,/ he just asked something,/
he didn’t throw a meteorite!”),
Bogdan Ioana
(“If you are attacked by a meteor,/ you must apply it/
a space martial art proceeding./
Thus, you will stem/ its Coriolis Acceleration.”).

(c) A special case is Dan Mitrut
(“It’s raining stars, young slave,/ It’s raining stars over the blind Earth./
It’s raining stars bathed in milk./
Chains of night/ Rattle in the sky.” -
verse from a famous meteor song),
who has provoked a real revolution in meteor poetry, combining his verse
with his own songs, photos, sculptures, drawings, dramas.

3. The young generation (high school or university students,
and young people under 23 years old, almost all of them being
amateur astronomers created by SARM), which can be proud that
nine representatives of it recited their own verse at the IMC 2000
in Pucioasa. Romania.
It could be divided in some zonal groups too:

The group from the town of Roman, Neamt County:
Lucian Boboc
(“Meteor,/ crown of nova on its head,/
and stars singing in the shadow./
You see it disappearing/ for hitting clouds…”),
Paul Boboc
(“Meteor,/ your passing image/
has transformed those moments/
into eternities of regrets/ and eternities of joys.”),
and Sergiu Dobos
(“How would we be/ transformed into evening stars?/
We would learn to cry meteors/ and to breathe the Universe…”).

The Bucharest group:
Izabela Boros
(“You are/ for the Universe/
just like a small meteor/ for the atmosphere…”),
Stefan Oprea
(“Another Perseid meteor passing./
Perhaps it is not so bright,/ but our eyes are proud to see it.”),
Ioana Grigore
(“The meteor will die, we shall live./
A silver tear opening the canopy of heaven,/
a mysterious window to the Universe.”),
Monica Nastase-Marcu
(‘I am also a star,/ carrying on my back/
a fire mantle.”),
Adrian Bruno Sonka
(“A white light/
fell from the sky. It was/
of minus one.”),
Mihai Dacalu
(“The Universe dreams about universes which sleep./
And we are parts: stars, meteors…”),
Madalina Preda
(“How would I feel/ as a shooting star,/
knitting my tail/ and rambling through the Universe?),
Gabriel Ivanescu
(“A lightning and a meteor made me understand that/
stateliness is ephemeral too./
The secret remains untouched.”).

The Bacau group:
Catalina Mitrut
(“I’ll keep silent, thinking about/ the pearl dust of Cygnus,/
the arrow of Hercules,/ the hands of Cassiopeia never caressed by the Dolphin,/
and leaving the unknown after me/ ground by the fireballs.”),
Ionel Catalin Diaconu
(“Meteors -/ children of canopy;/
unseen all day long,/ diamonds in the night.”),
Oana Ciurcan
(“On Mars, there is water now/
from tears of fireballs,/ meteoric tears which filled the channels/
with astral fishes.”),
Iulia Apetri
(“The universe is crying meteoric tears./
Dreamy earthlings are praying terrestrially,/
worshiping the sky.”).

The Transylvanian group:
Gelu-Claudiu Radu
(“Leonids - rain of stars,/
the great Apocalypse/
of the late autumn.”),
Mihai Prodan
(“Down there, the sand glittered,/ burnt by shards fallen from the Sun,/
and some radiant dust covered the Earth/
lost from tails of shooting stars.”),
Florin Leu
(“From Cygnus, Lyra and proud Perseus,/ burning stars fall from the ether./
Meteors - heroes of sky.”).

The Birlad group, Vaslui County:
Anca Buhus
(“I announce a comet with meteors/
parked in the life line/
of my palm.”),
Raluca Antonica
(“The universal attraction/
among the incompatible meteoroids -/
ablation of love.”),
Mariana Zarnescu
(“stellary tears,/
a painful Universe,/
smiles on Earth.”),
Mihai Andrei
(“Father, you are so cold!/ And full of black holes/
my soul calls/ your rain of hope-meteors.”),
Ancuta Mironica
(“Meteors fall again,/ white just like some flowers./
The new generation/ is a constellation.”),
Viorel Darie
(“A rain of stars/ and an ant hiding itself/
under the umbrella of a mushroom.”),
Cristina Nicoleta Dorobat
(“It is so nice to see rains of falling stars…/
I’d like to be immortal/ for collecting all of them/
and to close them in the depth of my being/
with chains of memories and padlocks of stars.”).

The Targoviste group, Dambovita County:
Gabriela Silistraru
(“They burn, remembering their home,/
suffering and offering their life to the earthlings,/ together with their image./
They are meteors, boy…”),
Adrian Negoescu
(‘Will we remember you, Comet Hale-Bopp,/
every year on the end of March,/
just like Comet Swift-Tuttle/
every year before the middle of August?”),
Diana Maria Ogescu
(“Meteors are angels/
which burn because of their own sins.”),
Ionut Dumitrache
(“Planets are angry,/ stars are falling,/
it’s raining meteors,/ the maximum is near,/
do not alarm yourself,/ we’ll do it.”),
Emanuela Ignatoiu-Sora
(“Last night/ stars from my chest died for a moment/
like the smell of a meteor/ crossing the Moon.”),
Daniela Milea
(“It is the merry meteor passing rebel/
next to a nice star,/ through a nebula…”),
Sergiu Olteanu
(“Orion,/ you project lights/
into our dark destiny.’),
Cristina Dinica
(“Meteor with a snow aroma,/ Come down,/ Speak to me/
On waves of velvet, of time.”),
Catalin Bunofschi
(“And you, little innocent child,/
thinking about the mystery of life coming on Earth,/
Look at the sky,/
and perhaps you’ll see a meteor.”).

Iulian Olaru
(“strings of guitar,/
meteors vibrating,/
accords of sky.”),
Raluca Radu
(“And if stars fall from the night palace,/
they always give birth to other stars.”),
Adelina Dinu
(“A silver star let drop from the sky,/ falling on the moist and cold earth,/
but looking again at the sky/ I don’t see anything absenting…”).

And a special group, also from Targoviste,
adept of meteor poetry adorned with other arts
(as I said, drawing, photograph, drama, collage, décor elements, etc.):
Adrian Sima
(“a melted meteor -/
wax on the altars/
of the living hearts”),
Tina Visarian
(“On my face there are tears;/ in the sky, tongues of fire./
It is a rain of colors, a rain of hopes./
An immense joy floods me/ and I open my soul for heaven./
<What is this?>/ <Just a rain of meteors.> - somebody answers./
But for me/ it is much more.”),
Elena Sorescu
(“Light tears of the gods/ hit the black sky/
for purifying the Earth with their fire -/
mystical meteors.”),
Eliza Trandafir
(“Meteors;/ are they immortal songs/ guiding us to eternity?/
Or just dead stones/ roving through the Universe/ and reviving,/
caressed by the sweet kiss of the wind?”),


Finally, I want to thank to Steve Sneyd (editor of Hilltop Press, UK)
and Gerald England (editor of New Hope International, UK)
for their information,
and Valentin Grigore (president of SARM) for his support.

Small Perseid Meteor in the Starry Ocean
Photo: Valentin Grigore



-Andrei Dorian Gheorghe-

(first published in Proceedings of the International Meteor Conference
Bollmannsruh, Germany, 19-22 September 2003)

The end of 1995.
Impressed by the 3rd edition of the cultural-astronomical event ‘Perseide’,
organized by the Romanian Society for Meteors and Astronomy-SARM,
I composed 3 meteor poetry dramas.

The best of them, and the longest,
‘The Meteor Hunt’,
was never played because of the big number of characters
(Astropoet, Meteor Champion, Young Scientist,
Popularizer of Astronomy, Old Scientist, Astrophotographer, Teacher,
some young observers, etc.)
who live together a maximum night of the Perseid meteor shower.

The second of them,
‘The Meteor Victory’,
was a fantastic tragedy, played in 1996 August 2nd at the first edition of
SARM’s Cosmopoetry Festival in Targoviste.
An earthling is judged and assisted for his reincarnation by
a celestial counsellor and the chorus of the variable stars.
He wants to become
‘a splendid protuberance,/ a tender jewel/ in the solar crown’,
or ‘a particle in a comet,/ a scale of magic fish/ swimming in the void’,
or ‘even a planet,/ an unleashed waltz/ on an orbital stage’,
but the counsellor’s offer is rather modest:
a stone in a satellite or asteroid.
In this case, the earthling asks
‘the chance’ to become ‘a proud and fascinating Perseid fireball’.

The third of them was a comedy,
‘Suffering in the Universe because of the Meteors’.
Two characters,
a doctor ‘commuting daily from Alpha Centauri’
and his patient talk and sing about the Universe in a hospital
suspended in the Milky Way
(‘Oh, meteors, meteors,/ Insects of light/
Buzzing in the nights/ Without the full moon!’).
This drama has had an interesting story,
being firstly played in 1996 July 19th at
‘Contact Astronomic-Radio Contact’ (a weekly astronomical broadcast)
by Danut Ionescu and me.
In 1997 September, it was played in English at the IMC
in Petnica (Yugoslavia),
by Gelu-Claudiu Radu and me,
the same ‘actors’ playing it again in English at SARM’s EuRoEclipse-99
in Targoviste,
a great event with participants coming from 4 continents.

Since 1997, a new author of astropoetic dramas has appeared: Dan Mitrut.
His first drama, ‘Maximum’, was also played in Targoviste,
at SARM’s Cosmopoetry Festival.
Two characters, Father-Meteoroid and Child-Meteoroid, flying in the sky
(‘We are a species from the comets, son!’),
live nobly and graciously their transformation into meteors
(‘Fly beautifully!/ We shall be immortalized/ By Horus’ eye!’).

In 1998 and 1999, three other astropoetry dramas were played
at the same festival in Targoviste, with some connections to the meteors:
one by Dan Mitrut (in which some comets assault a Dacian antique temple),
one by me (in which heavenly bodies talk through haikus),
and one by Lucian Boboc, a delicious comedy
entitled ‘Astronomer and Cannibals’.

Another comedy, ‘Solar Spots’ by Tina Visarian and Elena Sorescu,
was played in 2000 January at the ‘Admiral Vasile Urseanu’
Municipal Observatory in Bucharest.

In 2000 October, SARM played a new meteor poetry drama,
‘Three in the Universe’ by Adrian Sima,
one month after the ‘Romanian’ IMC,
in the same place, at the Cultural Centre in Pucioasa.
The Creator, the Master of the Meteors, and the Earth,
confess about their own cosmic condition
and the sense of the falling stars
(‘Meteors are falling,/ Colored seconds/ Detached from the sky.’).
A drama accompanied at piano by Stefan Oprea.

In 2001 January, another meteor poetry drama,
‘Destiny of Flight’ by Tina Visarian
(you can find her as Cristina Tinta-Vass in the IMO Data Base).
It was played at the first astropoetry gala of the 3rd millennium,
organized by SARM at the Municipal Observatory in Bucharest.
A meteor and an observer, their philosophic attitude to life,
and a witness delighted by the show
(‘I am a love flame./ And the man!…/
He will write a magnitude/ On my certificate of death.’) .
This drama was also accompanied by Dan Mitrut’s astrofolk songs.

In December 2001, another gala of the Cosmopoetry Festival,
this time in a mountain place, the Vanatorul Camp (900m altitude).
‘On the Bulwarks of the Light’ was rather a dramatic collage
from Adrian Sima’s astropoems,
recited by an observer under the light of a fireball falling…

2002 January 26th, the Municipal Observatory in Bucharest.
Perhaps the most special moments of meteor drama
in Cosmopoetry Festival history.
I conceived and coordinated there a collective drama,
‘Leonids 2001’
(‘Diamonds from the Lion’s Kingdom’- this subtitle belonging to
Valentin Grigore, president of SARM),
containing poetic fragments from the Romanian observations published
in the SARM e-list
(including also two Romanian astronomers established in North America,
Ovidiu Vaduvescu from Canada and Alin Tolea from USA),
some short Romanian poems,
and some texts from other countries regarding
the Leonid nights: a spendid essay by Alastair McBeath
(‘If I survive to see the 2033 return of Comet Tempel-Tuttle,
I shall be almost as old as my father is now!
The 2033 events may not produce Leonid storms anyway;
after the possible storm for 2002, perhaps it may be a century or more
before another Leonid storm appears,
three <years> for the comet, but more than a lifetime for us.’),
a limerick by Dr. David Asher
(‘You should try very hard to remember/ The meteor storm in November/
As you’re likely to fail/ To get a Leonid trail/
To repeat the event in December.’),
and a haiku (in French) by Andy Miller from USA
(‘en les vois tous/ brulant/ heretiques dans la glace’).
This collective drama was completed by a Leonid song by Dan Mitrut
(‘I don’t have time to hear,/ I don’t have voice to speak,/
Living flames caught me up, in edges of horizon./ Stars exorcised my road…’).

At the same gala, I gave dramatic interpretations to an impressive
meteor poem by David R. Keedy -
he who gave his name to an award of the British Astronomical Association
(‘My notebook plainly tells the tale/ Of the celestial show that really did fail/
From the confines of that hill and dale/ A six-meteor count, my Holy Grail!’) -,
and to fascinating science fiction meteor poems by two celebrities
in the anticipation world:
David Kopaska-Merkel from USA
(‘D’shan joined me on the balcony./ <Is the night not lovely?> I asked./
She touched my shoulder: <Come inside.>/
<The meteors.> I gestured at the sky./
She indicated a negation, tugged again, and I went back inside./
<She does not think it seemly,>/ Gloiia remarked, <none of them do.>’)
and Steve Sneyd from UK
(‘colony bursts and down and down we go/ sparks lost in the great light.’).

After that, in 2002 August, at the cosmopoetry gala of
the ‘Perseide’ event in Corbasca, Bacau County,
Ionel Catalin Diaconu performed his long poem,
inspired from the Romanian national myth-ballad
‘Miorita’ (‘The Little Ewe’) and entitled… ‘Meteorita’.
He was helped by some nice girls performing some goddess-meteors
(‘We shall give ourselves/ to the bridegroom Earth’).

Finally, I’d like to remember that almost all of these meteor poetry dramas
were published by SARM in their astropoetry anthologies 1996-2002,
edited by me with the support of Valentin Grigore.

Romanian Astroartists at a Cosmopoetry Festival Gala
in the Admiral Vasile Urseanu Bucharest Municipal Observatory
Photo: Calin Niculae



-Andrei Dorian Gheorghe-

(first published in Proceedings of the International Meteor Conference
Varna, Bulgaria , 26-29 September 2002)

It is a real emotion for us to celebrate 10 years of meteor poetry
in the Romanian Society for Meteors and Astronomy-SARM,
9 of them interfering with IMCs history.
That means: without IMO, these 10 years would not have existed!

All started in 1994.
Inspired by Valentin Grigore’s project through SARM,
to popularize astronomy using meteors in the center,
I began seriously to write meteor poetry.

In 1995, my folder with poems and proverbs on meteors
was presented at the ‘German’ IMC.

In 1996, after the 1st edition of SARM’s Cosmopoetry Festival,
some other folders, with my first poetry dramas
and Romanian contemporary astropoems,
were presented at the ‘Dutch’ IMC.
After that, our ‘Romanian Contemporary Astropoetry and Guests’ anthologies
became regular until the ‘Polish’ IMC in 2002.

In December 2002, Valentin Grigore and I published
an international anthology ‘Leopoetry’ in the IMO-News e-list,
and, also there, in June 2003, Valentin Grigore, Alastair McBeath and I
initiated Meteor Contemporary Poetry Project,
containing international anthologies at each solstice.

Since 1997, we have realized annual shows of astropoetry and arts
at the IMCs,
sometimes with foreign prestigious guests.
I also directed two other special shows at
NASA’s Leonid MultiInstrument Aircraft Campaign Workshop 2000
in Tel Aviv,
and at the European Convention of Science Fiction 2001,
on a Danubian isle in Romania.

In the meantime, we tried to expand meteor poetry into the worlds of
mythology, science fiction and literature.
Thus, we published meteor verse:
-in the International Journal of Dragonlore (The Dragon Chronicle),
edited in the U.K.;
-in the Journal of Science Fiction Poetry Association (Star Line),
edited in the U.S.A.;
-in Dialogue Through Poetry 2002 and 2003,
programs of the United Nations Society of Writers;
-and in many other publications.

From a sentimental point of view, we lived wonderful moments by traveling
to meet meteor lovers and to share meteor poetry with them.
Thus, we saw the Sun lightening the fortresses of
Belgrade, Jerusalem, Ljubljana and Malbork,
and the German great palaces Sanssoucci and Charlottenburg.
We enjoyed astronomical observatories in Mountain Tatra,
near Rome or in Varna.
We saw stars caressing the Roman Coliseum.
In the center of Krakow, we saw horses seeming to fly into the sky.
In Venice, we saw the castling between Venus and the Sun.
We followed some steps of Nicolas Copernicus in Frombork.
We admired the September constellations among the trees
of the Bollmannsruh camping.
We saw Jupiter resting on the roof of a cathedral in Berlin,
and the Moon gilding the Black Sea in Varna.
And, home, in Darmanesti, Oriental Carpathians, in 2004, August 12th,
we organized an unforgettable evening of Perseid poetry with meteor observers
from the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany and Romania.

Finally, some other special recognitions for our passion:
-in 2002, the coordinators of the Dialogue Through Poetry programs
of the United Nations Society of Writers,
Ram Devineni and Larry Jaffe, published in their web site
a SARM electronic book, Astropoetry on the Peaks,
including much meteor poetry;
-in 2003, the American editor Emily Gaskin,
launching the new electronic magazine Astropoetica,
opened a special subdomain, SARM Golden Astropoetic Gallery,
including 4 Romanian meteor poetry dramas;
-in 2004, the most active historian in speculative poetry, Steve Sneyd,
wrote in his newsletter Data Dump (No. 71)
‘A Provisional Timeline’ on science fiction and proto science fiction poetry,
noting among others: Gilgamesh epic, Aristophanes’ ‘Birds’, Lucretius’
‘De Natura Rerum’, Ovid’s ‘Metamorphoses’, Dante’s ‘Divine Comedy’,
Giordano Bruno’s ‘De Immenso’,
and many Anglo-Americans for the last centuries
(Chaucer, Milton, Pope, Franklin, Blake, Shelley, Poe, Byron, Tennyson,
Whitman, Arthur C. Clarke, Isaac Asimov, etc.).
In Data Dump No. 74, he supplemented a column for this Timeline,
‘1st Cosmopoetry Festival (Romania), founded 1996 by
Valentin Grigore and Andrei Dorian Gheorghe;
Cosmopoetry first included in the
International Meteor Organization Conference 1997.’

Our last words with this celebration: Thank you, IMO!!!

The meteors never die.
They just transfer their light
into those who observe them.

(Andrei Dorian Gheorghe)

The famous astronomer David Asher (UK), Ionut Ilesoi, Gelu Claudiu Radu
and Andrei Dorian Gheorghe near the Copernicus Tower
(Frombork, Poland) during the IMC 2002
Photo: Axel Haas (Germany)



-Andrei Dorian Gheorghe-

(first published in Proceedings of the International Meteor Conference
Oostmalle, Belgium, 15-18 September 2005)

1. History of the Meteor Contemporary Poetry Project

At the International Meteor Conference 1995 in Brandenburg,
a representative of the Romanian Society for Meteors and Astronomy-SARM
offered to the other participants a folder by Andrei Dorian Gheorghe,
with poems and proverbs about meteors.
As SARM had become a part of
the International Meteor Organization family,
this initiative was to inspire an original project
in astronomical poetry history.

Thus, in the spirit of IMO’s opening to culture
(Vice-President Alastair McBeath showing an extraordinary support
in such a sense since 1996,
and even President Juergen Rendtel confessing to me in a 1997 interview
that IMO encourages this attitude),
Andrei Dorian Gheorghe (SARM cultural counsellor)
and Valentin Grigore (SARM president and founder)
decided that SARM had to realize annually
a unique festival of cosmopoetry in Romania (first edition in 1996)
during their “Perseids” event, followed by
international astropoetry anthologies in the English language
printed for every IMC,
where also SARM presented shows of astronomical poetry and arts
(first time in 1997) - which became international in time.
And, obviously, the main “radiant” for this program was meteor astronomy,
which involves a very good knowledge of the whole sky.

As a result, SARM offered printed astropoetry anthologies
(all of them edited and with English translations from the Romanian
by Andrei Dorian Gheorghe)
to the participants at the IMO Conferences between 1996 and 2002,
the last one in Frombork (Poland),
where two nice Romanian meteor observer girls also presented
all SARM astropoetry anthologies,
on Romanian electronic music background,
as Meteor Poetry Parade.

This moment was followed by Leonid 2002 Poetry (leopoetry),
a short international anthology, published in December 2002
in the IMO-News e-list,
and a new idea appeared:
Meteor Contemporary Poetry Project
(begun in June 2003 by Andrei Dorian Gheorghe, Alastair McBeath
and Valentin Grigore, with two issues per year at solstices),
also published in IMO-News e-list to become accessible to any
meteor (and sky) lover and to any lover of speculative poetry.

So, Romanian Contemporary Astropoetry and Guests
(an original regular project of printed astropoetry anthologies
coordinated by a national astronomical organization affiliated to IMO,
and also representing a small part of IMC history),
begun in 1995,
has naturally transformed, since 2002-2003,
into Meteor Contemporary Poetry Project
(an original regular electronic astropoetry project
hosted by an international astronomical organization).
A case similar to the former Belgian magazine WGN,
which became the Journal of the International Meteor Organization.

After two small issues, the natural evolution of this project was
to become bigger and more free, culminating with the fifth issue,
a complex document of astronomical spirituality and a reference anthology
in speculative poetry history,
which included contributors from over 20 countries.
After this gala issue we should perhaps make
some conclusions and plans for future.

2. Success of the project

Till now, Meteor Contemporary Poetry Project
(with its prologue and a supplement) involved contributors from 24 countries
(Romania, U.K., France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Spain, Malta, Ireland,
Italy, Bulgaria, Poland, Slovakia, Russia, Turkey, Serbia, U.S.A., Canada,
Argentina, India, Israel, Japan, New Zealand, Morocco)
from all the continents.
Apart from the meteor lovers
(observers Jean Marc Wislez, Jos Nijland, Daniel Fisher, etc.,
and scientists David Asher, Galina Ryabova, Jeremie Vaubaillon, etc.),
also famous astronomers or astrophotographers were attracted
in this project (Ilan Manulis and Jean Dragesco, who gave their names
to two asteroids) and important poets and editors
(Larry Jaffe, the international reading coordinator for
Dialogue Through Poetry,
a program of the United Nations Society of Writers ,
Steve Sneyd, the most active historian of speculative poetry,
Gerald England, editor of New Hope International ,
John Francis Haines, leader of the British network of science fiction poetry ,
Emily Gaskin, editor of the American on-line magazine Astropoetica, etc.).
But the most faithful contributors were, of course,
the best Romanian astropoets:
Dan Mitrut, Adrian Sima, Zigmund Tauberg, Dominic Diamant,
Tina Visarian (Cristina Tinta-Vass), Gelu-Claudiu Radu
and Diana Maria Ogescu.

The success of this project was incontestable in speculative poetry world,
its web addresses being recommended in:
Star*Line (Journal of the Science Fiction Poetry Association),
Astropoetica, Handshake (newsletter of the Eight Hand Gang network)
and in the famous newsletter of genre poetry Data Dump.

Practically, Meteor Contemporary Poetry Project has demonstrated
cultural and educational earnings, on a side,
and how the Universe can be poetically known and conquered
through meteors, on another side.
Being a humanist project, it also tried to reflect
the complex astronomical feelings, thoughts, dreams and passions
of the meteor lovers watching the sky.
Thus, it could be nicknamed
“touching the universe through the littlest heavenly body”,
or “astropoetry with the meteor in its center”.
It was also a mirror reflecting some of the poems presented
at the International Meteor Conferences
(recited in the Saturday evening Astroshows
or exhibited in the posters).

3. Some points of attraction

To manage such a project involves delicate problems, however.
As in the case of the Astroshows of poetry and arts at IMCs,
sometimes Meteor Contemporary Poetry Project could seem
to disturb the technical rules of IMO-News -
as the length of the messages
or other heavenly bodies connected to meteors.
But the reasons are cultural and constructive
two times in a year, as exceptions that make the rules stronger.
That is because poetry ceased to be a superficial joke
tolerated in astronomy,
becoming rather a precious related friend,
a state of grace that brings emotion, joy and even happiness.

With all my respect and consideration, a message with an issue
of Meteor Contemporary Poetry Project includes, in fact,
many more poetical messages,
and poetry is a non-conformist state of spirit,
which cannot be framed in technical rules.
It is impossible to cut up only meteors in poetry,
and to exclude human feelings or connections with other heavenly bodies.
The number of the contributors cannot be limited,
if they really deserve to be published.
Personalities in astronomy or literature cannot be rejected,
and young talents must be stimulated.
Believe me, it is not easy to manage such a project
and to keep alive the interest for meteor poetry.
Of course, this is only my opinion.
If there is someone to demonstrate the limits of meteor poetry,
and that the technical rules are more important
than the artistic rules for MCPP,
I’m ready to listen to him.
But I’m afraid if so, both the IMC Astroshows and MCPP
would begin to die, and I think this would be regrettable
because now in the world there are only two
regular projects of astropoetry:
MCPP (associated with the IMC Astroshows,
which are unique in the world)
and Astropoetica, edited in U.S.A. by Emily Gaskin since fall 2003.

4. What will the future bring?

Thus, the most significant “barometer” for our project has clearly become
the enthusiasm of the IMC participants regarding poetry,
and in this respect both
the IMC Astroshows and Meteor Contemporary Poetry Project
could be now considered goods of IMO,
like two traces of the same fireball,
which happily complete the intense scientific activity of this organization.
We cannot estimate how long the next issues of MCPP will be
(depending on the contributors),
but certainly they will be shorter than the 5th (jubilee) issue
and we’ll try to keep this project as a phenomenon recognized as original
in universal culture,
and demonstrating the exceptional humanistic possibilities
offered by meteor astronomy.

5. Acknowledgments

Personally, I wish to thank to my two colleagues in managing MCPP,
Alastair McBeath and Valentin Grigore,
their contributions to meteor astro-humanism being remarkable:
the first of them in astromythology and searching old beliefs,
the second of them in organizing cultural-educational-astronomical events
around meteors.
Also, my thanks to many other friends, IMC participants and people of culture
from all over the world, who asked me to continue MCPP with any price.

Even if I am also solicited for many astropoetical co-operations in the world,
I intend to keep Meteor Contemporary Poetry as the main project of my life.
In such a respect, I am also convinced that three major works from
Romanian Contemporary Astropoetry and Guests 1996-2002 series
must be included in the IMO electronic archive
(with improved variants)
as MCPP commemorative supplements:
the astropoetic drama Meteor Hunt 1996,
Meteor Poetry Manifesto 1998
(both of them by Andrei Dorian Gheorghe)
and the “SARM group poetic symphony” Leonids 2001.

And finally, my gratitude for the interest and encouragement showed
to meteor poetry work by Paul Roggemans,
the first general secretary of IMO,
whose efforts and activities in the past for this organization-family
impressed me very much.

Perseid Meteor
Photo: Luigi Suceu


Finally, now, in 2010, I’d like to remind all the issues
of the Meteor Contemporary Poetry Project,
published in the electronic archive of the International Meteor Organization,.
Practically, this project replaced SARM’s project of printed anthologies
Romanian Contemporary Astropoetry and Guests 1996-2002
in the moment when we became convinced by the advantages of the Internet
in spreading larger our astropoetry approach..

All began with a prologue of short astropoems and astropoetic thoughts
inspired by the Leonid meteor shower 2002:
Leonid 2002 Poetry - prologue, December 2002

The project started officially in 2003 with two anthologies per year,
at each solstice,
this system resisting until 2007.
The first anthology began with international poems
and continued with Romanian poems:
MCPP (1), June 2003

The second anthology in 2003 was dominated by my astropoem
written in the moment when I found out that my mother Steliana Gheorghe
is gravely sick:
MCPP (2), December 2003

In 2004, the first anthology became much larger,
including 3 chapters (the last of them trying an expansion to
“other related or special astropoems”:
MCPP (3), June 2004

This anthology was followed in September 2004 by a supplement,
the first version of the lyrics of a song composed and played by
a famous French astronomer at the IMC 2004 in Varna:
The Song of the IMC - a September 2004 supplement
by Jeremie Vaubaillon

The second anthology in 2004 included 2 chapters,
Meteor Poems and Other Related or Special Astropoems,
but the first of them had 6 subchapters,
the nucleus being SARM’s Perseid Event 2004 (with participants from 4 countries):
MCPP (4), December 2004

The first anthology in 2005 was the apogee of the project,
with 14 chapters:
MCPP (5), June 2005

The second anthology in 2005 included 3 chapters, Meteor Poems,
Meteor Poetry Events 2005
(a joint astropoetry reading of SARM
and the Bucharest Jewish Reality Literary Circle,
SARM’s Perseid Event 2005 astropoetry reading,
and IMC 2005 Astropoetry Show)
and Meteor Humour:
MCPP (6), December 2005

In 2006, the first anthology had 6 chapters,
a sentimental one being Perseids - Romanian Memories:
MCPP (7), June 2006

The second anthology in 2006 was based especially on two astropoetry events,
included in SARM’s Perseid Event 2006 and the IMC 2006:
MCPP (8), December 2006

The first anthology in 2007 contained many meteor poems, too:
MCPP (9), June 2007

The second anthology in 2007 included sequences from
SARM’s Perseid Event 2007 and the IMC’s Astropoetry Show 2007,
and was dedicated to the memory of my father Costica Gheorghe
(who died in November 2007):
MCPP (10), December 2007

Unfortunately, that tragic event
made that in the next year this project had only one issue, entitled:
Meteor Poetry 2008

And in 2009, the death of my mother Steliana Gheorghe
determined SARM to take over this project, to enrich it with images,
and to re-name it:

A Green Perseid Meteor
Photo: Valentin Grigore


What will the evolution of this project be
in 2010?
We shall see after
the 29th edition of the International Meteor Conference,
which will be held in Armagh (Northern Ireland).


Design by: Florin Stancu
© 2010 SARM
(Romanian Society for Meteors and Astronomy)