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Poetry and Physics Mari-Lou Rowley

Poetry and Physics

Mari-Lou Rowley
from Viral Suite (Anvil Press, 2004)

" Sex in Space Time "

Consider the curve of space
the swell of a breast, the concave
bowl of belly pooling droplets of sweat.

It's as simple as this, Einstein said
think of gravity as geometry, not
a force to be reckoned with.

A body freely falling
through the vacuum of space
would chart a straight line
across the star-spangled night
if not for the mass of flesh rock water earth
curving space-time, holding satellites
and fragments of shuttle
in its nest of orbit.

For the same reason the earth revolves around
the sun, a hand falling through any arc of
air will choose the swelling mass of thigh
over nothing, for warmth
for meaning.

Sex, gravity, quantum theory
are merely the play of
matter and energy, radiating
waves of photons dancing here and there
the pull and swell of bodies
in motion.

Einstein's general theory of relativity links the three dimensions of space and the fourth dimension of time in a dynamic cosmological continuum. Unfortunately, this theory, which provides a theory of gravity, does not incorporate the uncertainty of quantum mechanics and the wave-particle duality of matter. Finding a quantum theory of gravity and reconciling macrocosm with microcosm is one of the greatest challenges in physics.

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