Categories Poetry
Location This poem first aired on Northern Community Radio, KAXE & KBXE FM
Date July 5, 2103
URL Launch Project

James C. Henderson

Before the Big Bang, the universe
was in an incredible state of order
not an atom or a Higgs Boson out of place.
Ever since then, it has become an ever-increasing mess.
You see, as the arrow of time flings itself forward
things break and don’t un-break.
They don’t reassemble themselves.
They stay broken like wine glasses
and burgundy stains on white carpets that won’t come out—
even after hours and hours of couples counseling.
And the drive is to ever-greater disorder
each word splitting off into its own meaning
dissembling, branching into a new hurt
exponentially, like an atomic reaction
from that initial slight, that first callous word
pushing everyone farther and farther apart.
One day, as we expand into space—addicted to the red shift
all the galaxies will have raced so far apart
there will be no light or heat between them.
We will be alone.
Then time will slow down.
Time always slows down when you’re alone
but we will eventually be so alone that time will stop.
Then the galaxies will begin to break down
the planets dissolve and the stars dissipate
and we will be but randomly charged particles
bouncing around in blackest space.
No events to attend. Nothing on the calendar.
I needn’t tell you
with no parties to go to or even a dentist’s appointment
there will be nothing to mark the dark passage of time.
Time will not only cease but cease to have any meaning.
Like me, without you.