In the 80s, science fiction writers—half of them scientists—entertained the idea that black holes could be gateways to other dimensions, or wormholes connecting distant edges of the universe. An invisible web like a four-dimensional anthill. 

In reality, we don’t know what happens inside a black hole exactly, but even attempting to approach its event horizon would exert an unparalleled destructive force on anyone foolish enough to try. However, if only they could look back as they fall. Resist the attention pull of the blackest abyss at the center of distorted space and near-infinite gravity. Look outwards. Look back. To a cosmic spectacle no living being has seen before and lived to tell the tale.

You see, gravity makes relative time slow down. 

From our perspective, the space traveler falling into a black hole would fall slower and slower. And slower. Until they appeared to have stopped completely. Trapped in time, a hearbeat away from annihilation. The expression on their face a deathmask of surprise and wonder.

Any observer would have to wait for countless millennia to see the story play out. 

The space traveler, on the other hand, floating in a bubble of impossible stillness, would still experience subjective time. The last moments of the fall taking mere seconds. 

Looking back and into the stars, the space traveler would see the universe accelerate. Stars move in the sky like specks of silver dust carried by the wind; distant galaxies spin faster and faster, drifting apart or crashing into each other. Nebulae billowing like smoke tricks of a great magician, giving birth to new worlds faster than you can blink. Supernovae go off in bursts of blinding light. Perhaps, the space traveler would be lucky enough to glimpse the mystery of cosmic expansion. Does it ever slow down, or are we destined to drift apart into darkness?

All that in a few heartbeats. And not a soul the traveler could share it with before fading into oblivion.

Social media take away more than they offer. That’s why I let my readers decide if they want to share my work. If you enjoyed the read or connected with the photographs, send this to a friend. Thank you.

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x
Mailman Running

Have a Think

Stories and photography for chronic overthinkers.

Thank you for signing up. I respect your time and will never send spam.