Her Big Bang

Paolo called it her cosmic microwave background, and it seemed not so off the mark. It was the end of her first year at Dartmouth; she got pregnant. After a few weeks of heart-wrenching decision-thinking, she terminated it, an act as irreconcilable with her Christian upbringing as having had pre-marital sex in the first place. 

The cosmic microwave background, as best she understood, was what the universe looked like just after the Big Bang–looked and still looks like, because of course one can even now look up and across billions of light years to that time. Light travels fast but not fast enough. So if you look far enough you can see it still, the shape of things just after the Big Bang, this and the pattern of everything following that first universe of superheated plasma–the dense sectors, the diffuse ones.

As it was in the Beginning: getting knocked up freshman year was her Big Bang.

The Italian Novel

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