a bleak cratered sphere
floats in the starry night

dim blue sunlight
penetrates the dusty skies

casting fuzzy shadows
across the shattered landscape

a jagged promontory's shadow
tilts across the obsidian plane

an accidental sundial
left by a forgotten war

the ground trembles
the spire crashes to the ground

the grating wind
carries off the dust

below the surface
strata of sedimentary rock

going down for miles
where the methane sea once lay

stretching down
to the hard black basalt

darkness warmed by the heat
of that world's core

down deep below
the rock softens
begins to glow

in the depths where rock begins to melt
where red light comes from all around

where the continents begin to crawl
under miles and miles of endless rock

where the fault lines slip and slide
a fissure, a tunnel of cooling liquid

it follows the warmth of molten rock
the sweet taste of cooling lava

in the glowing darkness
in the burning rock

the trail grows warmer now
the final goal approaches

Down, down, deep below
deep beneath the hills

in endless searing molten rock
the pursuer gives the chase

chewing through rock
with teeth made of stars
the fusion worm turns

upward, toward the sky
towards places high above
where the rock is solid
where the light is blue

the pursuer and the pursued race
one seeks the sky
one seeks to capture
to take what it wants

up through solidified lava
through layers of mud turned stone
up towards the sky
towards the open air

the stone grows cold
their fires grow hot

up, up, ever upward
through the cold hard stone

racing for the sky
almost there
almost to the open air

melting through the obsidian shell
that the bombs made long ago

the prey bursts into the open air
fills its heaving lungs with the stuff of life
turns to meet its pursuer
turns to greet its follower

in the swirling winds
the leviathans of the deep meet

the pursuer bursts from the ground
its quarry turns toward it

fresh hydrogen filling its reactor
the pursued is the stronger now

shining brighter than the sun
it leaps toward the pursuer

under a pale blue sun
the fusion worms turn

sated with the hydrogen from the air
back down into the warm wet tunnels
the places where the liquid rock flows
where the warmth can keep life comfortable
now pursuing, now pursued
the fusion worms turn

back through the sandstone,
back through the basalt
down to the place where the stone is soft

the gap between them slowly closes
the pursuer draws nearer
its reactor begins to spread
opening into a ring
as it catches up
begins to swallow the prey
pulsing with magnetic bursts

slowly the prey begins to turn
spreads its jaws wide
clamps down on the pursuer's tail

the fusion worms writhe in extasy
turning slowly in a sea of stone