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Expansion and Contraction

Written by Sybrand Veeger

Expansion and Contraction:

I wasn’t the first to observe:
Nature expands through light
And contracts through gravity.

If this is nature’s music, her chordal root,
I’d like to dig deeper,
To play further:

Time’s movement cannot be linear.
It must follow the reality of light and gravity.

Perhaps timelessness, infinity,
Could be thought to resemble contraction.
Maybe timeliness, finitude,
Could be thought to resemble expansion.

What lives, grows and dies, is that which expands,
That which swells reality.
What is and is perpetually, energy, for instance,
Bears upon the finite,
Forcing it to yield,
Like gravity does on light!

The Spirit and Matter of history,
As Hegel and Marx observed respectively,
Dance tango to a pulsing beat:
The rhythm of Time’s dialectical feet.

If we listen closely to the music of history,
We detect its movements:

The allegro of Antiquity,
An adagio in early christianity,
A lentando into the middle age,
And a renaissance crescendo into an enlightened revolution – Accelerando!

Then modernity produced industry,
Which in turn swelled inequality,
Poverty, crooked morality:
The total misery of humanity.

Although there’s some delight in science, technology, globality!
Thanks to which nationality has lost some gravity.

History, then, moves accordingly:
Like an atom, chord and strings,
Expansively and contractively.

There are some tunes left in the chord root of Nature:

The body, human or otherwise,
Follows the tempo of a pump:
The neck’s pulse, the heart’s thump,
Allows for breath to dance likewise.

Exhalations, inhalations,
The vibrations, my pulsations.
Expansions and contractions
At the core of all sensations.

All that’s left is the spirit, the mind,
I hope it tango’s á la divine.