Williams Supplement

Imagine looking through a window at any environment that is particularly significant to you. Reflect on the scene, paying close attention to the relation between what you are seeing and why it is meaningful to you. Please limit your statement to 300 words.

I can feel myself slowly drifting off to sleep as my knees fold to my stomach and my arms curl around them. Without gravity, I am floating, adrift. I am a fetus in the womb again, except this time the womb is a giant construct of steel and circuitry, except that it is hurtling through space, and except that it has windows – no bigger than those in an airplane.

I stare out one such window, as I always do in the moments before I lose myself to sleep. The inky black nothingness provides me with a strange mix of comfort and exhilaration. The sheer sense of scale, the fact that the slice of the universe I can see through the window is enough to fit a few trillion Suns into – an understatement, that – is enough to make anyone dizzy. It is an attestation of the insignificance of what we know about the universe, about the world, about ourselves so far. The endless reaches yet to be explored and the infinite possibilities make my mouth water. I lick my lips just in case; globules of floating saliva are unseemly.

My gaze might as well be sweeping indifferently across my own home-planet, somewhere amid the smattering of white pinpricks. The scale of things dazzles me again. I realize how tiny we really are, how the light from everything humanity has ever known is not even registered by my retina.      

We are microscopic and so are our petty affairs – dirty politics, greed, war. No amount of bloodshed will ever make the universe pause for even a breath. Look at us, squabbling over the speck of dust we inhabit, not seeing all there is to explore, to learn, to understand. We must focus our energies into becoming what we’ve always had the potential to: great. 


The queen of nowhere. said...

How do you write so well? I just love the way you write!

SaJ said...

Wow. Williams.
And another wow as always.
Good luck!

Anuradha said...

Post the Amherst wala essay too =D

Richa said...

You're an amazing writer. I've been sweeping through your blog. And I'm off to older posts now. :)
Keep up the good work! :)

The Me. said...

We are SO petty. So true.

p.s. Keep writing moar and moarrrr!

Amna K said...

Absolutely wow!

Talha said...

Wonderful. Love you writing.

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Smokey_Cat said...

your writing reminds me of this book I once read, It was called 'the season of passage'... it had horror, but some philosophy at the same time.

It was about the expedition to mars in the year 2050 or something and how the crew contacted a mental disease from from there that changed them ( mentally) into something inhuman.

It's probably not relevant to what you wrote here, but it reminded me of that nevertheless.

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