This poem was inspired by the book Einstein’s Dreams, by Alan Lightman.

 

Ever-cycling –
on and on we go,
present
and in the present
tense always, but for
those infinitely many
moments of repeated beings:
is-es and was-es and wills;
moments of finitude
looping endlessly,
rhythmically –
time breaks all traditions;
nothing is sacred,
fated to be reproduced
again and again,
like so many copies
of yesterday’s bestseller.
Timeless – false word,
seductive word
proffered by agents of transience;
meaningless.
Again and again,
mistakes made, lies told,
hearts broken and mended,
played out a million times
and then a million more,
on and on,
immutable and
destined
by predestination.
Chance encounters,
made ordinary by neverending
playback, and domino effects,
made catastrophic by causality
and foreknowledge, paralyze
the man who means to live;
premonition makes chaos
his all,
his demise… unless,
simplicity distracts,
from the turning of the wheel,
his fragile mind; salvation
through ignorance.

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