It is a law of the physical world—although not of mathematics—
that if you multiply zero enough, 0 x 0 x 0 x 0 x 0 x 0 x 0 x 0 x 0 x 0 x 0 x 0 x 0 x 0 x 0,
and so on, and so on, and so on, and so on
persistent, the little engine (of the universe) that could,
you arrive at an actual number,
an infinitesimal fraction,
from nothing something,
that eventually multiplies to become:
Before space and time this happened
in less than an instant
(since there was no time).
That is why we all exist
why I am here
to write this poem—
or perhaps not a poem at all,
just a bit of floatsam—
Ethan Goffman is the author of the poetry collections I Garden Weeds (Cyberwit, 2021)—2nd place winner in the Taj Mahal Review Poetry Prize—and Words for Things Left Unsaid (Kelsay Books, 2020) as well as Dreamscapes (UnCollected Press, 2021), a collection of flash fiction. Ethan is co-founder of It Takes a Community, which brings poetry to Montgomery College students and nearby residents, and is founder and producer of the Poetry & Planet podcast on EarthTalk.org. Ethan also writes nonfiction on transportation alternatives for Greater Greater Washington and other publications.
Image by Rochus Hess, Attribution, via Wikimedia Commons.