I was born from a singularity;
a monumental, infinitesimal point.
From a blinding pulse,
a scalding soup of independent constituents.
I was born from snapped bones and creaking joints
falling and falling and falling and falling,
From coarse hair thinning and skulls expanding,
the cage of thoughts and dreams deteriorating.
I exist because expansion was triggered,
along with hydrogen and helium and curvature.
Because collapse followed,
spinning and compressing and attracting and repelling.
I exist because an internal growling arose;
creatures die and are born and then die again
because of an insatiable need to learn,
and the framing of institutions to harness and build.
I am human because we learned to understand,
and comprehension brought forth awareness; brought forth resolution.
The integral ingredients of matter bonded
and likewise, so did we.
I am human because amidst the expanse of an indifferent universe,
overcoming numbers and space and time,
two people fell in love.
Because chemistry and electricity can procreate,
but the promises we make do so much more.
I am alive because of a roll of the dice.
I am living because of the hands into which they fell.
When asked about the poem, editor Ranelle Irwin said, "I think this piece shows the awe-inspiring interconnectedness we all share; we are products of evolution, of chemistry, of fates crossing when we least expect it." Emily is in 12th grade at Adel-DeSoto-Minburn High School.