Theory of the Universe Poem

25 May

My apologies, dear regulars. I forgot to warn you about the extra post. I am posting my response to We Write Poems prompt from last week, which asked us to come up with our own theory of the beginning of everything. I did a bit of research and combined science with metaphor [and a nod to Terry Pratchett and his brilliant world] and came up with this:


a tightly
wound string
of space,

and darkness is upon
the face of the deep

until the string collides
with an anti-string
[tightly wound
in the other
direction] bursting
the confines
the strings–

and there is light

unwound, unbound
space     escaping     expanding,
growing stars so massive
they go to their deaths
exploding stellar dust;
particles     drift     [gravity
pulls] collide
to become our space,
our universe–

and from dust we came

until the energy darkens,
decays, dissipates,
and the strings
rewind, pulling
space back
into its


…and then a giant
turtle swims by…

Please visit We Write Poems to see what else people came up with to explain the beginning of it all.

I shall see you tomorrow for our usual Thursday Thoughts.


Posted by on 25/05/2011 in exercises, poetry, writing


Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

34 responses to “Theory of the Universe Poem

  1. Irene

    25/05/2011 at 7:38 am

    Oh wow, this is very well done, the image of the string is so apt. Then the wonderful turtle.

  2. margo roby

    25/05/2011 at 8:03 am

    Thank you. The Terry Pratchett reference with the turtle came to me last night!

  3. annell Livingston

    25/05/2011 at 9:03 am

    Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful…using the “string” to wind and unwind your words, love it!

    • margo roby

      25/05/2011 at 9:06 am

      Thank you, Annell. I was hoping that is how it comes across.

  4. Chris Goan

    25/05/2011 at 9:12 am

    Lovely Margo! I have just had a wee trip through some of your poems- and very much enjoyed it.

    I’ll be back! (If that does not have too many Terminator connotations…)


    • margo roby

      25/05/2011 at 9:14 am

      Thank you, Chris! Glad to have you visit and you are welcome anytime [even with Terminator connotations].

  5. vivinfrance

    25/05/2011 at 9:24 am

    Margo, I salute you. This is a splendiferous explanation for just about everything. I wish I’d written it!

  6. margo roby

    25/05/2011 at 9:32 am

    Why, Viv! You have made my week. Thank you.

  7. pamelasayers

    25/05/2011 at 12:10 pm

    Margo, from beginning to ending, this is wonderful. The ending caught me by surprise. I love that.


  8. margo roby

    25/05/2011 at 12:11 pm

    Thank you, Pamela. It did me too. A flash of inspiration last night!

  9. Sharp Little Pencil

    25/05/2011 at 2:26 pm

    Margo, thanks so much for visiting me. Quantum physics is very helpful in understanding the “string” that started it all. Like “the ties that bind,” in a way! Is the turtle reference from Native American creation stories?

    Also, your form, the way it is long and stringy, very effective. Loved this take. Here’s a laugh for you from Amy:

    • margo roby

      25/05/2011 at 2:54 pm

      Amy — I spent some time with string theory for dummies online this weekend.
      The turtle reference is a nod to Terry Pratchett, one of my all time favourite fantasy writers. His books posit a world that is a flat disc on the backs of four elephants on the back of a giant turtle swimming through space. Each of his books take place on the discworld and each satirises something: Hollywood, Fairy tales, Macbeth. You name it he has skewered it.
      Thank you for the link. I absolutely loved the poem and all the different alliterations, as well as the humour of the conversation. Very clever. I am going back now to reread more slowly. Our language would be much duller without Yiddish.

  10. anjum wasim dar

    25/05/2011 at 2:45 pm



    yet alive




    gasping in


    from earthly dust

    made so fair

    I see
    a difference


    in my beginning

    is my end

    A Light bright

    will be
    forever shining

    The Power
    who holds

    the wound
    and the unwound

    forming the string
    forming the shape

    from dust to create

    the Universe Supreme

    tis the Truth
    The Truth No Dream

  11. margo roby

    25/05/2011 at 2:55 pm

    Anjum! A new style: more focused, less twin-ish. I like it. Now we’ll see if you can do that again!

    • anjum wasim dar

      25/05/2011 at 3:22 pm

      Thank you M My Gracious Guide,you are a Poet, I followed your blogs and found them filled with all sorts of poems and prompts for more poems.
      My Twins dimmed their lights in honour and respect-as visions of prose came in caskets wrapped in flags,
      I followed Your style and your lovely poem M-

  12. Mary

    25/05/2011 at 3:11 pm

    Margo, I enjoyed your poem greatly. It all sounded so scientific until the very end, which took me by surprise and left me smiling!

  13. margo roby

    25/05/2011 at 3:13 pm

    Thank you, Mary! When the ending came to me it left me smiling too.

  14. anjum wasim dar

    25/05/2011 at 3:34 pm






    life minute

    life unknown in
    spaces black

    is life light?
    who has

    from the
    last flight

    light everpresent
    we turn away

    we go astray
    we wish to stay


    Forgetting Our

    of love
    in wonderland

    why is one
    a living dead

    why is the phrase
    read and reread

    ‘Off with her head’?

  15. b_y

    25/05/2011 at 4:43 pm

    Turtles all the way down. One of my favorite visions of science and belief.

  16. margo roby

    25/05/2011 at 5:13 pm

    Thanks, Barb. Definitely with turtles.

  17. Ron.

    25/05/2011 at 5:47 pm

    I, too, love that turtle. I may BE that turtle. Wonderful.
    And thinks for stopping by the eggs.

    • margo roby

      25/05/2011 at 9:08 pm

      There are a few of us might BE that turtle, Ron. I’m glad I found the eggs. I realised today why I found the blog’s name so familiar. During NaPoWriMo someone gave a prompt that gave the titles of twenty or so blogs. I used the names of about fifteen in a poem. Yours was one of the ones I used, a turning point phrase. So, thank you.

  18. Dick

    25/05/2011 at 6:26 pm

    String theory wound around Discworld. An elegant and entirely plausible explanation of the prima causa!

    • margo roby

      25/05/2011 at 9:10 pm

      I was hoping I would get one commenter who knows Pratchett. Thank you, Dick. And I rather like the two theories together, myself!

  19. 1sojournal

    25/05/2011 at 6:28 pm

    Turtles are interesting creatures, carrying that load, slowly up hill and down, how dare we think we have a corner on the knowledge of a destination. Loved what you did here and thanks for your comments on my myth.


    • margo roby

      25/05/2011 at 9:14 pm

      I had turtles as a child, fairly big ones. They are fascinating and I love how you put that, Elizabeth: knowledge of a destination. Thank you for your comments.

  20. Tilly Bud

    26/05/2011 at 6:38 am

    String theory and Pratchett – nicely done!

  21. margo roby

    26/05/2011 at 7:28 am

    Thank you TB! I like to think Pratchett would be amused. I saw him once from a distance of about six feet and I think he would approve!

  22. Elizabeth Young

    26/05/2011 at 12:59 pm

    Awesome poem, enjoyed this very much this morning! A difficult topic to write about even if ones beliefs are defined…

  23. margo roby

    26/05/2011 at 1:37 pm

    Thank you, Elizabeth. I enjoyed the exercise and managed to combine myth, fantasy and science!

  24. Josephine Faith Gibbs

    26/05/2011 at 2:35 pm

    Margo, I’m all but squealing! We love Pratchett dearly. Chuck is reading the third book of the Tiffany Aching series to us at present. Tonight before we get started I’ll share this with the family. (I’d better make sure supper is early enough to accomodate a discussion of string theory.) And, yes, I’m confident Sir Terry would like your poem a lot.

  25. margo roby

    26/05/2011 at 2:49 pm

    Yay, Josephine! I have almost everything Pratchett wrote. He is a wonder! And, he wears a cape!!! Thank you for your comments and the pleasure of knowing you will share the poem. Wish I could hear the string theory conversation!

  26. bluebell books

    27/05/2011 at 8:24 pm

    easy but profound word flow.

    it takes talent to write for a challenge.
    Check out our short story slam today,

    We love creativity, your input is valued.

    Happy Friday!
    Hope to see you in!

    • margo roby

      27/05/2011 at 8:48 pm

      Thank you kindly for the invitation, BB, but my prose narrative doesn’t move like my poetry. I did check out the slam and enjoyed wandering through your site. So much going on.


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