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To let understanding stop at what cannot be understood is a high attainment.
Those who cannot do it will be destroyed on the lathe of heaven.
………………………………………………………………………….. —Chuang Tzu, 3rd century BC

Any explanation of the nature of space and time is bound to be intimidating.
If physicists 
ever do figure it out.George Musser, Scientific American


it was we who thought them up,
we who conjoined them
out of simple need. until then,

the sun rose and fell without them.
there were grasses, wind-swept cliffs,
blazing clouds slid across fields of
immense aquamarine, and that big light
that came like clockwork, having been
sliced by horizon’s blade the night before,
shaved to nada, until its last arc fell
into the core of its blaze and disappeared.

but we grew discontent at huddling,
at tending night’s fires just to keep 
chronic fear from troubling our gut,
until we sloughed ignorance to cleave
what is …. apart 
by orders of light and dark
to make it comprehensible

as if splitting a diamond, we cleaved
and began stringing shards of days
upon an invisible cord to make a rosary,
concocting distinct sequence, fingering each,
we counted and prayed to the mists
of our imaginings

wanting elbow room we began to exceed our place,
kicking it outward here and there, collapsing walls,
expanding home: toward the moon first,
then Mars, expanding out and down
intent upon getting to a bottom or edge
but finding only our reflection

when we reached Neptune we might have thought
this Here is quite enough; might have considered
Now sufficiently embraced by the gravity of our star 
—but then we eyed Pluto,
further out, a demitasse among hulking mugs,
and thought
          ……              there must be vast future to go
and plenty of days to go there in —as many as we need
with as much room as any God might make
and numbers enough to calculate the expanse of space and time
and enough words to make them mean
.
more
.
—enough to make them both
comprehensible, graspable, tellable—
but we always come to a silence of dead ends
a wall over which we still must claw in sweat
to climb…….to reach…….to rend…….to breach
forever discontent
.

Jim Culleny
2/10/17

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