U.S. Poet Laureate Ada Limón Reveals Poem to Fly on NASA’s Europa Clipper

Published : Friday, June 2, 2023, 11:04 am
ACROFAN=Newswire | | SNS
U.S. Poet Laureate Ada Limón is revealing a new poem that will fly into space aboard NASA’s Europa Clipper mission on a yearslong journey to explore Jupiter’s icy moon Europa. The poem, first shared publicly during a special reading at the Library of Congress, will be engraved on the spacecraft set to launch in October 2024.

Now members of the public are invited to add their names to fly with the poem — like a message in a bottle from Earth — traveling billions of miles as the mission investigates whether the ocean thought to lie beneath Europa’s icy crust could support life. As part of the “Message in a Bottle” campaign, names received before midnight Dec. 31 will be stenciled onto a microchip, to accompany the original poem by Limón, titled “In Praise of Mystery: A Poem for Europa.”

To sign, read the poem and hear Limón read the poem in an animated video, go to:

The site enables participants to create and download customizable artwork — your name on a message in a bottle against a full-color illustration of Europa and Jupiter — to commemorate the experience. Participants are encouraged to share the experience on social media using the hashtag #SendYourName.

"Writing this poem was one of the greatest honors of my life, but also one of the most difficult tasks I've ever been assigned,” Limón said. “Eventually, what made the poem come together was realizing that in pointing toward other planets, stars and moons, we are also recognizing the enormous gift that is our planet Earth. To point outward is also to point inward."

A collaboration with the U.S. Poet Laureate and the Library of Congress, the “Message in a Bottle” campaign is similar to other NASA projects that have enabled tens of millions people to send their names to ride along with Artemis I and several Mars spacecraft. This initiative draws from the agency’s long tradition of sending inspirational messages on spacecraft that have explored our solar system and beyond. In the vein of NASA’s Voyagers’ Golden Record, which sent a time capsule of sounds and images to communicate the diversity of life and culture on Earth, the program aims to spark the imagination of people around the world. A replica of the Golden Record is in the Library’s collections.

“Ada Limón is a brilliant poet whose work often connects readers with the natural world, so her Poem for Europa is powerful in communicating our human instincts for art, science and exploration,” said Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden. “Sending a poem into space on a mission to explore our solar system is an incredible opportunity for us all to reflect and sign on to Ada’s poem as a ‘Message in a Bottle’ from Earth.”

Europa Clipper is currently being assembled, on camera, at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Southern California. Set to launch from Cape Canaveral, Florida, the spacecraft will travel 1.8 billion miles (2.6 billion kilometers) to the Jupiter system, where it will arrive in 2030. As it orbits Jupiter and flies by Europa about 50 times, a suite of science instruments will gather data on the subsurface ocean, the ice crust and the moon’s atmosphere.

In January, Limón visited the NASA laboratory to see the spacecraft and learn more about the mission to explore another water world.

Limón, whose poetry often connects with nature, was recently reappointed by the Librarian of Congress to serve a two-year second term as U.S. Poet Laureate through April 2025. She has a number of major collaborations under way to share more poetry with the public over the next two years. In August, Limón will appear at the National Book Festival, and in the fall, the Library will announce details of her signature project — a first-ever partnership with the National Park Service and the Poetry Society of America to present poems in select national parks across the country.

Copyright © acrofan All Right Reserved

    Acrofan     |     Contact Us :     |     Contents API : RSS

Copyright © Acrofan All Right Reserved