What? You thought the creation of everything
was some cosmic deal like the Big Bang,
firing off this enormous burst of life
in all directions, fueled by a fierce
enormous passion? Yeah, right. Think again.
Bring it a little closer to home. Life.
Well, everything wouldn’t mean much without it,
would it? Sounds kind of boring to have it all
but it all just sits there. So life, gotta have
life. That’s one thing. Getting life going, well
that’s kind of like a big bang again.
Lightning and storms and all that jazzing up
the primordial soup, whipping it up
in a frothing frenzy of fermentation,
et voilà, we got ourselves a sustained
reaction that step by step leads to us
and nothing is about to quit there.
That’s everything, now, right? Past, present, future
and the old Norse Fates, those mythic old ladies
with their threads of fate, spinning, twining,
winding, weaving, and somehow it all makes sense,
to them at least, in a way that seems like
magic to us. Nice and linear, right?
Well, with weaving, I guess two dimensions,
at least — our life moving forward and back,
and all the lives next to ours that connect.
But, you know, somehow that isn’t right either.
I don’t know why, but I know nothing is
what’s linear, devils move in straight lines
taking the easy path, and everything
must be something else. I’ve seen the wizard —
young hot-chickadee with her white-blonde buns
and orbiting rings of primal rainbow shapes —
putting her head together with the dude,
the nordic surfer dude social as Shaggy,
the two of them magicking up virtual
models of the e8 polytope.
That was something to see. It looks so
simple. It’s all lines, but the way they connect
makes something else, and that keeps changing, or not.
It is the same each time you see it, but
it looks different. From one angle you see
a Star of David, from another squares,
there are octagons, dodecahedron, more.
One plane tells one story, another
something else. Models within models,
shapes within shapes, order within order.
Each time I look at it I see something new.
Even the model, a bit like a blueprint,
doesn’t completely work in 3D.
It’s bigger than that. If even a blueprint
of everything is bigger than what my brain
can wrap itself around, well, then, the real thing,
that’s gotta be something, really something,
just what I don’t know. Not sure I need to know.
But everything? I know what it’s not.
A straight line. Anything easy. That bursting
forth of passion throwing out growth, that’s not life.
Cancers have that all worked out, and just look
how useful and durable they are.
Everything, well, it’s got some sort of order.
Amazing how even chaos seems to have
some order in it. Maybe it isn’t
actually chaos? Or maybe chaos
doesn’t mean what we think it does. Maybe
chaos is just order that’s too big for us?
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