by Harley White

HarleyWhiteCosmicCollision 800

It seems that a neighbor of Milky Way
called the Large Magellanic Cloud
will not in a long quiet orbit stay
since with bulky mass it’s endowed,

composed, it’s supposed, of much matter dark
twice more than was formerly guessed,
and so it’s flying, as if on a lark,
into our astronomic nest.

Before, it was thought that Andromeda
would be the collision looming,
among other smashup phenomena,
our solar system consuming,

in merger of colossal proportions,
albeit in billions of years,
resulting in galactic distortions
within our empyrean spheres.

A previous poem titled “Milk Spill”,
which I penned in twenty fifteen,
attempts to portray how stupendous will
be that huge encounter foreseen.

But now astronomers have predicted
an earlier crash tremendous,
perhaps catastrophic as depicted
with consequences horrendous.

For instance, what’s called our central black hole
could be waked like sleeping giant,
devouring gases around it whole
to grow in manner defiant.

While this may not bother our life on Earth,
there’s a chance the initial hit
just might to a headlong hurtle give birth
so our solar system would flit

from where we are to space interstellar,
knocked out of our present home base,
no longer to be Milky Way dweller
in the arms of our rightful place…

To what remote regions might we be flung
in about two billion years hence,
that is, other beings with songs unsung
in a future whither and whence?

Meantime, let us relish our human lot,
with a seeking spirit inside,
and strive to appreciate what we’ve got,
as long as our lives may abide

in Milky Way’s warmly welcoming stream
where lies our immediate fate,
delving deeply for truth within the dream,
and thus great good fortune create!

~ Harley White

* * * * * * * * *

Link to poem “Milk Spill” referred to in stanza five…
https://www.astronomerswithoutborders.org/news/awb-blog/311-dark/astropoetry/2023-milk-spill.html?fbclid=IwAR25By8Ov75qet5BzR2ejDpSlTS4F7HV-ObXy0nja_zLacIEsg6edx3oM14

Inspiration was derived from the following sources…

Our Milky Way Will Crash Into a Neighbor Galaxy Sooner Than You Think…
https://www.space.com/42901-milky-way-galaxy-large-magellanic-cloud-crash.html?fbclid=IwAR1cfeD3le0CbtqxH6pk0ShRhekcM0TDQlaW11UZN5N_eMTAmqXFaJpDoQs

Impending Galactic Crash Could Rip Open the Black Hole at the Milky Way’s Center…
https://www.livescience.com/64433-milky-way-large-magellanic-cloud-collision-imminent.html

A cosmic collision may be coming for our galaxy sooner than we thought…
https://www.newscientist.com/article/2189594-a-cosmic-collision-may-be-coming-for-our-galaxy-sooner-than-we-thought/

Catastrophic galactic collision could send Solar System flying into space…
https://phys.org/news/2019-01-catastrophic-galactic-collision-solar-space.html

Galaxy collision to send solar system flying?
https://earthsky.org/space/galaxy-collision-milky-way-lmc-solar-system

This Hubble Space Telescope image shows a merger between two galaxies — M51a, also known as the Whirlpool galaxy (left), and M51b — that are similar in mass to the Milky Way and the Large Magellanic Cloud.

Credit: NASA, ESA, S. Beckwith (STScI), and the Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA)

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