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The Weight of the World

by Ken Sanes

What kind of universe is this,
and what is it that has been wrought?
I ask because this universe
isnít at all like the one we were taught.
And what kind of irony is this
that it may be played into existence
by infinitesimal vibrating energy strings:
Pythagoras and the spheres 2.0,
and the universe once again sings?
These questions are haunting my brain,
evoking a state of radical doubt,
like certain particles, we are told,
that tend to pop in and then pop out.
So I ask again, what has science wrought
when this isnít at all like the universe
that we believed we were taught,
and when even a fall is the result
of the persistent illusion of time and space,
leaving us anomalous and out of place.
Or should we just accept that the world
will never make our kind of sense
and live for now, in the present tense,
and enjoy the mind-boggling positions
and all the ironic cultural juxtapositions
that the age affords us as compensation?
The answer is, no, itís still not too late
for us to champion a more sensible life
and refuse to accept our common fate.
We can refuse to be teased into existence
by the missing measure of the sublime,
and stop wondering if weíre blips of force
or deluded fragments of missing time.
We can take a stand and let it be known:
no more strung out physics for me --
Iím with Newton and the apple tree --
and I refuse to countenance a world
where strings may or may not be curled,
and where the colors and flavors of quark
loom like giants in the pint-sized dark.
So join me, wonít you, as we ignore the small,
and tell the story that we know so well
about the weight of the world and a fateful fall.


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