Bill Roper (billroper) wrote,
Bill Roper

A Matter of Time

I'll have more to say on FilKONtario later, but one of the things that happened was that I won the songwriting contest! I'm always a bit surprised when that happens.

The topic for this year was "Time Travel". I looked at the topic last week and said to myself, "That's one of your favorite themes -- you should be able to do something with it." The problem with a favorite theme is that you tend to have gone to that particular well a lot, so I needed a new plot.

As I cast about for ideas, I recalled Larry Niven's argument (possibly borrowed from someone else) that if it were possible to travel back in time and change history, then history would be changed until a time machine was no longer invented in that universe. It's a fairly reasonable argument, so the trick was to find a way to make sure that it was false for the purpose of the song. And that led me to the plot -- although Niven's argument has vanished somewhere into the back story of the song -- of what I suspect might make a decent little Analog-style story.

Or I like to think so. :)

Words and Music: Bill Roper
Copyright 2010

A Matter of Time

We’re ghosts in a bubble, traveling through history.
Ghosts in a bubble, unraveling the mystery.
Searching for answers surreal and sublime
And it’s just a matter of time.

We can look, we can listen, but we can’t touch the stream.
The ripples that we make might do something extreme.
The past is safe from our temporal team,
Locked in a bubble of time.
We shift through time and we shift out of phase.
The only thing we steal are a couple of rays
And we always shift back before the bubble decays,
Bringing back the knowledge is prime.

We’re the astro team and we make the long run,
Watching planets form in the dust ‘round the sun.
Seeing magma glow on a world just begun,
Safe within our bubble, we ride.
Now we’re gonna find out what we wanted to know.
We’ve hardened our bubble ‘gainst the Big Bang’s glow.
We’re gonna shift back and watch the universe blow.
It’s gonna be a helluva ride.

There’s nothing to see and there’s plenty to fear,
‘Cause time and space aren’t functioning here
And the Bang should blow and it would all be fine
And we try to shift home, but it’s all the same
All the way up the line.

Who made the laws that make the universe go?
And we look at the nothing and I think that I know.
There’s a paradox of time that is lurking below,
Waiting for a chance to unwind.
And we’ll never go home, ‘cause we’re filling the need
Of a supersaturated world awaiting a seed,
So blow up the bubble, let the universe feed.
We’re the source from which all things are defined.

(Chorus twice)
And it’s just a matter of time.
And it’s just a matter of time.
Tags: cons, filk, lyrics, musings
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