If it is all a conspiracy… A Poem by Ian Badcoe

…it’s the conspiracy to bring down crashing
those who step from the tenth floor ledge,
the conspiracy of time to keep on ticking
whether you have enough of it or not, the con
of physics offering the same deal to everyone
on the same conditions, my thrown rock falls down,
your thrown rock falls down, everybody’s rocks fall down
except when thrown so hard as to exceed
escape velocity, although there can be no escape
from a universe fair on every occasion,
you cannot bluff gravity, nor the conservation of energy,
all clocks tick the same tick,
you cannot argue with the virus, can’t finesse
another half an hour of oxygen out of the empty tank,
you can bank the constants
of creation, you cannot game this system, cannot bribe
your experimental aeroplane not to crash
when your maths is wrong, the virus doesn’t hate you,
and doesn’t know what flavour of politics you follow
or whom you worship, the bacteria do not care,
by which I mean that caring is simply not a thing for them,
the virus doesn’t want to kill you, doesn’t want to spread,
isn’t keeping any score of who’s alive and dead,
the world’s a cold and hard and wonderful place,
and I’m OK with that,
you’ll be all right with a little luck,
there is no luck,
that is good:
you do not want the cosmos playing favourites,
don’t want to guess the rules on a day-to-day basis,
all Nature is a conspiracy not to care
and thank goodness for that.

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