May/June 2016 • Vol. XXXVIII No. 3 Nature's Nature |

On the Nature of Things

Created, all of it, from the tiniest of particles—all of it from all, for nothing can come from nothing at all, and therefore cannot be removed from all— not fins nor wings nor claws nor paws, nor especially my child's small hand one afternoon, holding my husbands hand as they wandered to the edge of a pier that wandered into Lake Michigan, while I stayed behind and watched them from a blanket spread out on the sand. The water, cold and vast, and "Nature, so plain and manifest …" The child, the man. "Stuff is everlasting. Things abide. …" But when they turned from such a tender distance to wave to me, they were so mortal in appearance, I lost all certainty and gave it up—my claim on them—and it has not come back. … Lucretius, however, never wavered in his belief that, having been created once, we become "permanent constituents of the universe," and although Lucretius was driven mad by a love potion, ill-prepared and given to him by his wif

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Laura Kasischke has published eight collections of poetry. She received the National Book Critics Circle Award for Poetry in 2011 for Space, in Chains (Copper Canyon). She teaches at the University of Michigan.

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By Laura Kasischke

Created, all of it, from the tiniest of particles—all of it from all, for nothing can come from nothing at all, and therefore cannot be removed from all— not fins […]

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