This is one little poetic observation of what might be called the greatest riddle of all.

I was getting nothing done one night, and I was reminded that I had plenty that I needed to do and that I needed to get my mind off of my distractions--including, among them, what I see as a moral deficiency. So, I wrote this.

Now, this essay isn't necessarily a precursor to anything else...but its name does match a book I've been working on in concept for a few years. It has nothing to do with the overall plot, or design...except in one thing. Let me know what you think of my writing here, and you just might be able to influence this other thing--if you're so interested.

A sphere of ice fell through the black void, touching nothing but other small particles within its medium. In a world without gravity, without anything, there was nothing to turn it aside or to slow it down—and so the ice continued.

Ever falling, ever flying, this piece of debris was but one of the seemingly infinite pieces that were detached from meteors, planets, exploding stars…anything which does or ever might pass through the universe.

The ice bounced. If it had been in a gas, there would have been a noise—and if that gas had been air, it would have sounded like the metallic thud made by an object bouncing off of one of our man-made objects. Yet there are still things which we can find, occurring naturally and never without some sort of intelligent design, which make the same noise. Perhaps the source of that noise which might have been was one of these—a natural metal, not sculpted or shaped by any human agent, but only by agent divine. By what design, instead, did the ice find itself where it was, without purpose or desire for one; with only an eventual, and likely not final, destination to keep it moving? Without something in its way, the ball could only continue until something deflected it, until, perhaps, it encountered a cloud of obstacles so thick that its destination was diverted, that its path was changed and the old destination not only aborted, but forgotten.

But let us then say that this path, while forgotten for a time, is hard to ignore despite the vast reaches of that void in which the ice traveled, and though diverted for a time, comes to find yet another diversion that helps it back to its original destination. Yet the only law which could help this piece of ice, forgotten debris in the depths of space, is seemingly that of averages—that this thing will go where the universe wills, where some God intends. And imagine, for a moment, that this ice could choose—that, ridiculous as the idea truly is, that the ball of debris could choose where its path were headed, that through its own power it might at least have the chance to determine a worthwhile path, a chance to become more or, at least, as much as it could be. Yet with that power of choice could come a worse power still, a power which any human might fear above many others—the power to choose wrong. While the right choice, the best choice, remains, there are many wrong ones. There are so many places the ice, by that said law of averages, might go astray—might become little more to some that a statistic, a piece of that disaster or this. But, let us imagine that instead of missing its intended path, this piece of ice found its goal—in this case, it became a clump of hydrogen and oxygen, insignificant and yet important despite its tiny magnitude, inside of a star. This star, perhaps, might be orbited by—what, is it eight, or nine?—planets, one of which we are particularly familiar with. Or it might end up food to some other star, some other sun, which, while not important to me or you, makes up a part of the fabric of the universe. Or, perhaps, it goes astray, that little ball of ice finding no rest and flying on through a dark void, unmindful of the presence of any other debris, of any possible design. So it goes…and yet, somehow, someday, that ball of ice will strike something else, which will someday strike something else, and eventually, some tiny ball of ice will find its way to the right star.

In a flight of fancy, the mind wanders as the ice. Yet though the mind wanders through dark places without corridors, without walls—without boundaries—it wanders inside a vessel. Our body, our soul, serves us to guide us even as that tiny sphere of ice—no more than a few molecules, perhaps—which seems without guide.

Much of this page is an incomplete analogy—to what, even I am not sure. My mind is wandering down those boundless reaches, my words there to express my uncertainty and my faith—that this universe is more than a figment of our imagination—but even in nonsense, that groundless piece of information born of nothing, there is something—call it debris, or call it a modicum of sense, of truth. And thus I call it.

Submitted: August 23, 2013

© Copyright 2022 Ansel Rover. All rights reserved.

Add Your Comments:



I take it from your essay that you are trying to find the meaning of any event and the effect of these events on the whole -- or part-- of the universe. All things are interrelated and relative of course, but I personally don't believe that there is anything purely random in the universe. Quantum Physics craps out after you get so far and it is arrogant to think that man is wise enough to ever figure out the mechanics of the universe. There certainly was a designer of it, an intelligent designer. So in the end, the most logical question is not why any event happens or how it happens, but what force or power causes it to happen, and if indeed that force or power is intelligent, how do I relate or react to it?

Anyway, keep thinking like you are, I suspect it will eventually take you down a road where you will find some very satisfying answers, as long as you keep your mind open.

Sun, September 15th, 2013 5:55am


I'm looking towards the end of that road. Thanks.

Sun, September 15th, 2013 12:19pm

Brennan Dwyer

Very beautifully written! You did a great job. You should take a look at my short stories some time. :)

Sat, January 18th, 2014 2:43am



Mon, January 20th, 2014 2:47pm


I enjoyed reading this, well done! :D


Sat, May 31st, 2014 3:22pm


Thank you. It's been a while since I wrote this and I hope I've grown past it. It's...something to write and to think about when it's late and you're feeling a little lost.

Wed, August 6th, 2014 7:29pm

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Short Story / Fantasy

Essay / Riddles

Poem / Religion and Spirituality