I somehow manage to pick up more books… This time from Raven Used Books in Northampton, MA
This video has been making the rounds lately, put together by photographer Daniel López, and recently featured at NASA’s Astronomy Picture of the Day site. It’s one of those things which creates wonder about the universe we find ourselves in, and at the same time, influences our cosmology.
I could watch this over and over. Even though it seems like we stand at the center of all those stars, we know it’s an illusion. Even though we feel like we’re alone, many of the stars shown have their own planets, many possibly harbor life. It’s amazing.
Can this be captured in words? Maybe… Maybe some facets, maybe elements. Maybe hints.
If we know the known universe does not center on our tiny little planet and our tiny little existences, can we also realize that for our spiritual lives? Might we not value each other, our humanity and individuality and worth, if we know we’re in this together? That we’re stuck with each other somewhere in this vastness? Questions that continually move through my brain…
I guess I haven’t yet described the particular direction of my thesis collection. I’m not entirely sure yet, in fact.
But I do have an inkling. I suppose one is never sure anyways about these things.
The inkling is this: Poetry and Science complement each other. There is a divide in U.S. society about the society’s cosmology, as Pattiann Rogers describes the term. The vastness of the universe – the incomprehensibility of it – begs for poetry. Poetry is how we humans explain to ourselves things we do not fully comprehend. Old myths have fallen by the wayside throughout human history. Progress always supersedes old myths, but only once society has made that choice. Old myths and world views – old cosmologies – fight hard to maintain their power, even to the point of violence. New cosmologies open doors to progress. New cosmologies beg poetry to further their cause. Poetry opens doors to new cosmologies. This is accomplished through wonder, beauty, and honesty. Poetry butts heads. Poetry breaks doors. Poetry does not know everything. Science does not know everything. Neither can describe things they don’t yet know about. Both are necessary for human progress and survival – to maintain a humanity in the face of the vast necessity of everything, in the face of the void, in the face of unknowing.
Discussion, of course, is welcome.
Why you’re here, at this blog, is up to you to decide… How you got here, why you’re reading, and everything else in relation to you sitting there reading this you have to answer for yourself.
Why I’m here is another story. I am using this space to keep track of my thoughts, ideas, inspirations, and everything else that I go through in the process of writing my MFA thesis in poetry. So that’s my motivation. Continue reading