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Savannah Brown reads her poem, “the universe may stop expanding in five billion years”.

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Hi, my name's Savannah Brown, and today I wanted to read for you a poem called “the universe may stop expanding in five billion years” from my collection, Sweet Dark.

I chose this one because a lot of the collection deals with the unfairness of time and how to appreciate sort of small and wonderful things even with the knowledge that they will someday end or go away. And yeah, I thought this one was pretty representative of that idea.


The universe may stop expanding in five billion years
at which point time will cease
to exist and I can finally stop
complaining. there's a fragile
world reflected in the glassy
pearl of your spit left
on my belly and i'm telling
you, i've never been so
old. the day sucks with leech-
teeth. even given the shreds
of your dead rind caked under
my fingernails there's the black
chasm of want expanding
in my chest the way a bead
of ink breaks, making me difficult
to touch without an exit plan.
imagine, please, a better
continuum. you say earlier
doesn't feel real
and you're right,
not because there was anything
exceptional about the heath
in early afternoon, not because
our chins sticky with cider
was a notable pop in this
quivering glitch of a life,
but because it was too ordinary
to even dare remember,
because we'll someday ache
for any regular Sunday in June
where the sun was a sure
thing and breath tasted like warm
grass and there was not a single
indication the cosmos would one
day shut like your eyes, tight
with pleasure.