The same atom
can be in two different places.
We are glad to hear it.
It explains the mystery of the cat.
Perhaps the mystery of what is fact.
And if one, why not billions?
All the billions that I comprise,
or you, or any quantum physicist?
In a tavern, over two identical steins of ale,
in the gloom and candles of a German folk tale,
I see William Wilson across a crowded room.
There is the pale comrade by the light of the moon.
Seven-Cheese is fooled by - and fooling - himself
Shelley’s Prometheus is unbound on the shelf.
On the wall Rosetti’s couple meet themselves
in a darkling wood that is missing the elves:
we cannot know from the shades of the painting,
which of the women is falling and fainting.
And in the corner, John Donne’s melancholy dream
has Anne More’s shade echo a still-birth’s scream.
As above, so below,
and on one side
as on the other,
as here, so there.
Rest in peace and war.
Is the same identical
if it is in another place?
in heaven and hell
priest and devil,
can you tell them apart
by their footprints
in different hemispheres?
We have scientists
- and science, not alchemy -
astronomy, not stellar divination,
and yet, we pin the tail on zebras,
though we are astride the donkey.
And what is a black hole,
but dark magic?
What is anti-matter,
but matter’s doppelgänger?