At first she, named after a he,
was only a 1923 scientific scheme,
an early rocketers’ hairbrained dream.
In a Galilian moment,
astronomy would be rearranged,
yet years floated by, and nothing changed.
Her prototype languishing,
in a university laboratory.
the funds she sought finally
came her way in ’83.
While awaiting her new ride,
her meticulous moving parts,
were assembled with great pride
Finally, in ’90, she was lifted high,
to escape Earth’s relentless grip,
beyond gravity, to orbit she’d fly.
Up where clear space made her,
vision so free to everyone’s glee,
until they found she couldn’t see.
So up there awaiting her dance,
circling, while men below struggled,
to give her a chance.
Finally, with a plan in place,
In ’93 they came to her grace,
hoping to get her back in the race.
The first shots they took,
were stunning to behold,
the Universe was as young as it was old.
Her reach was immense,
to the beginning of time.
Variety and beauty, simply sublime.
Galaxies galore, with black holes a more,
the birthplace of stars turned to dark mater.
Pulsars and supernovas to savor.
Planets first seen, some hopefully green,
with sky and blue, blue water.
Theories to challenge and ponder.
Five times she was fixed, and in betwixt,
her magic continued in wonder.
But her batteries weak, her orbit to flounder.
Brave men are in place to come to her grace,
and repair her one last time.
One last chance, one more dance,
before her final, slow decline.
Burned up in space will not erase,
her contribution to man.
As we look out from this fragile slice,
She’s shown us the future of can.
Images Courtesy NASA