The greatest mystery the universe offers is not life but size. Size encompasses life and the Tower encompasses size. The child, who is most at home with wonder, says: Daddy, what is above the sky? And the father says: The darkness of space. The child: What is beyond space? The father: The galaxy. The child: Beyond the galaxy? The father: Another galaxy. The child: Beyond the other galaxies? The father: No one knows.You see? Size defeats us. For the fish, the lake in which he lives is the universe. What does the fish think when he is jerked up by the mouth through the silver limits of existence and into a new universe where the air drowns him and the light is blue madness? Where huge bipeds with no gills stuff it into a suffocating box and cover it with wet weeds to die?Or one might take the tip of the pencil and magnify it. One reaches the point where a stunning realization strikes home: The pencil tip is not solid; it is composed of atoms which whirl and revolve like a trillion demon planets. What seems solid to us is actually only a loose net held together by gravity. Viewed at their actual size, the distances between these atoms might become league, gulfs, aeons. The atoms themselves are composed of nuclei and revolving protons and electrons. One may step down further to subatomic particles. And then to what? Tachyons? Nothing? Of course not. Everything in the universe denies nothing; to suggest an ending is the one absurdity.If you fell outward to the limit of the universe, would you find a board fence and signs reading DEAD END? No. You might find something hard and rounded, as the chick must see the egg from the inside. And if you should peck through the shell (or find a door), what great and torrential light might shine through your opening at the end of space? Might you look through and discover our entire universe is but part of one atom on a blade of grass? Might you be forced to think that by burning a twig you incinerate an eternity of eternities? That existence rises not to one infinite but to an infinity of them?
Stephen King
Shut up, shut up, will you! Nobody minds that you are in pain. Pain is a human condition. You do not care that I am hungry, do you? And therefore I do not need to care whether you are in agony. Nobody is hurting you! Be quiet, be quiet! Rannig, fill his mouth with dirt and I’m sure I do not care what diseases he contracts. He has already been in the water. He has probably swallowed millions of pestilential microbes and they are none of them acting too quickly. Do you hear me? I say shut up, sir! By my hat—the man makes a noise to shatter teeth! Here, what are you complaining about? Bartleby looked over and saw where Shandandzo was gripping himself. Oh, they are only knees! You have two of them and an immune system—the body heals, if you leave it alone! You need not shout about it! He took the headwrap from Rannig’s hand and shoved it into Shandandzo’s mouth. There. That will quiet you for a while. Don’t you know there are men reading and having their tea? Shameful of you to carry on in this way. The captain only put your knife behind your kneecaps and made a few fractures. Hardly anything to cry about at all. A man has no business crying about kneecaps. A tendon, I grant you, might deserve a paltry yelp or two, but you are alive and you have your health otherwise— you can want nothing else. You hardly need your knees when you are always on the gad, stealing priceless artifacts from visiting dignitaries—and you are a noble besides. Nobles have money: they hardly need feelings or knees. They have men for that. He snuffed and watched Shandandzo’s eyes roll back in his head. Now, if you will be a very good convulsing noble, or whatever it is you are, you will be quiet and make no more fuss about your knees. He turned back toward the teahouse, humphed to himself and moved to go, but turning back, he said, And if you make anymore obnoxious noises whilst I am writing my notes, I will have the boy throw you down a well.
Michelle Franklin