Creation: From Nothing until Now (a poem)

An existential interpretation of science: excerpts from the poem ‘A creation story’ that frames Willem B. Drees, Creation: From Nothing until Now (Routledge, 2002)


There was a time

when there was no time,

when time was not yet.

The time

when there was no time

is a horizon of not knowing

a mist where our questions fade

and no echo returns.


in the beginning,

perhaps not the beginning,

in the first fraction of a second,

perhaps not the first fraction of the first second,

our universe began without us.


In billions of galaxies

the universe made itself

from dust stars

from stars dust.

Much later,

from dust from stars

from dust from stars from dust

swirled our Sun

and from leftovers

the Earth, our home.


after ten billion years,

there was evening

and there was morning:

the first day.


a modest beginning,


a history of failing

and occasionally

a small success.

A molecule

carried information

from generation to generation,

history bred purpose,

by chance.



a few million years ago

the East Side Story:

groups of apes groom, hunt and call.

Sticks, stones, fire

eating from the tree of knowledge

the tree of good and evil,

power, freedom,


Beasts became us

more was delivered than ordered,

more than we can bear?


cement of the tribe

response to power

of mountains, the storm, the sea,

birth and death,

power as large as gods.


ten thousand years ago

Abel was killed by his brother,

we farmers eat ashamed our bread,

the earth cries, forever red?

A new age,

a prophet warns king and people,

a carpenter tells

‘a man who fell among robbers,

was cared for by an enemy’.


measure and count,

challenge knowledge

and authority!


way out of immaturity.

In us

our heritage,

matter, information,

and a box full of stories.


hope and fear

our neighbors


here on Earth,


hope and fear

the great project

of thought

and compassion

on a road

of freedom.