Quarks

Fireworks
Last night I had them all. Words stacked like paper cups, each fitting perfectly into the one above. Puzzle pieces make a picture, but a stack of cups makes a good party, and I would have been witty and wise – just mysterious enough to keep you interested, just interesting enough to keep you by my side.

The world never fits together that way. It’s man that demands sense, as if the world owes it to us for one thing to follow the next. Physics agrees, at least. Actions must have reactions, cause must have effect. Up and down, top and bottom, charm and strange. Of course the flavour of quarks are largely another human convention, as if the quarks lie down at night and taste each other. But who are we to say they feel no desire? Perhaps charm and strange the two parts we find in every relationship, and the high energy collision that spawns them is the two of us, fighting over who shall be which.

This morning the words are gone. Cups lie scattered on every surface, like fallen petals after a storm. Dropped chips and empty bottles, someone’s shoe without a pair. I gave my words away last night, and even the memory of them I gave to the god of drink. I wanted them for you, but I never know quite what it is that you want.

Just because there will be a reaction doesn’t mean that you can predict it. Quarks are never found in isolation – to understand them you must observe the action of the group. Yet when I am alone I am clever, kind, unconditional. If you knew me when I was alone you would love me. Is it my fault that such a state is unobservable? That science has not yet been able to answer the question of what we are when no one is watching?

 

 

Image courtesy of Jimmy Musto, who has made his work available for free on the website Unsplash.

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