on standard candles

A "standard candle" is the twin supernova that marks the death of a certain type of double star system. Its uniform brightness allows astronomers to measure time and distance.

What is the standard candle of a life?
a predatory action so banal
it measures us, as drum thuds under fife
so we must speak with it to speak at all
A parent passed - a lover out of touch
one last fight cut between us, jagged, sears
fortunate I have only hurt so much;
there's so much heartache I have yet to fear
A child who dies, whose parent must yet live
a city razed, never to be rebuilt
a trust betrayed, that no one can forgive
hearts too far gone to even measure guilt -
I cannot ink the map of her or him
on whom my sorrow sheds a light so dim