Noisy Black Holes

With the words and images of this post, I am creating a space where ideas grow out of an interweaving of people, places and events, both present and past. I don’t know where this writing is going, nor what format it will eventually take. For now, I imagine making short animations of words falling one after the other into an empty book forming a lake in the middle of the page. Or maybe the lake is a black hole, or maybe the hole is white and it just keeps swallowing all the words.

I keep thinking of a black hole as a very quiet place, where the atmosphere is so dense, all sound is absorbed before it can travel. But perhaps a black hole is so heavy with absorbed sound that it hums.

Today’s writing is punctuated by the sounds of work and everyday life around me:  the drilling of on-going renovations on the ceiling in the locale below me and the person above, walking, back and forth on the hollow concrete floor that is my ceiling. Each footfall lands like a decision has been made, his hearing muffled by a need to pace. I ask him to go more quietly, but already I hear the crescendo of his forgetting. Today, I am wondering what the noise will be of  colliding protons?  I am unable to ignore the fact that a group of physicists are at this moment preparing to recreate the conditions of the beginning of the world, by colliding protons of hydrogen nuclei in an undergound circuit. I’ve been aware of this project for several years, but now the countdown is on – 19 days as indicated on the official CERN press site*.

I bought a ticket to Berlin today. It took me most of the morning. I wove my way through a maze of websites, train and air possibilities, prices and dates, but it was negotiating my fears that took the most time. On the 10th of September, I want to be with Paul.

When I am very quiet in my room, I can hear a rumbling sound that at first, always makes me think of an earthquake. My next thought is then of the hydrogen collider, straddling France and Switzerland deep underground. But, the sound is always the train on the pink subway line as it pulls away from the Pont-Marie stop and passes under this building. So far, I have not been able to leap over those first two thoughts and go straight to the last.

The hadron collider is scheduled to be turned up to its maximum velocity – 99.9999 % of the speed of light on September 10, 2008. I am not so much afraid of annihilation, as I don’t want to be left alone in a black hole.

I decide now is the time to empty the space  at the front of my studio that passes for either a huge closet or some architect’s joke for a small room. This is the storage room where all of the things from past residents accumulate.  I want it empty. This will be a space for me to sit in, to think in, to play in. It will be my studio inside a studio.