by James Ross. Published: 03 February 2012

Through metal doors and iris scans lies high technology

Under the ground behold the sound sets quarks and gluons free

Though for today the giant ring lies dormant in its dreams

Before too long we'll hear its song upon electric streams

Alloys gleam and scintillate in shadows cast through steel

As silence flares and blinded glares crash screaming 'round the wheel

At energies that ne'er before has man attained in flight

It's in this place the silence breaks and blindness turns to sight



Though powerful this monster is that gnaws at quarks with teeth

We're here to mend as we descend into the earth beneath

Yes powerful though fragile too: the year can take its toll

There's work to do and it's our crew that's ticking off the roll

Once in this place all that you see was filled with earth and stone

'Twas hand of man that moved the land, worked fingers to the bone

And now beneath the rolling hills a techno-forest creeps

Trees of metal without a petal stand vigil in the deeps



They start like vines winding down the walls twisting as they fall

Then to ALICE they blow a kiss and power through the hall

And branching off they wend their way into the myriad plans

For waiting there, no room to spare, they find their woven stands

The EMCal, the TPC, but species in a zoo

Their banishment, their nourishment is this symphonic stew

A symphony of blinking lights and gently roaring fans

The clustered cells like iron wells laid gently by our hands



We hurry now, there's much to do before we call it quits

We navigate the complex state and keep about our wits

Replace that card! Connect that wire! Our time is running short

But careful too 'lest through and through you overload the port!

Now input here! Now output there! Now tie these off with strings!

Our grove we tend and signals send to test a thousand things

We have a week or maybe two to ready for the run



Now all is patched and we're released, last cables have been laid

We never rested, ALICE is tested, the lights begin to fade

Once we are gone and dark returns the monster slowly wakes

Forest stirring and cavern purring all the time it takes.

Slowly stretching and reaching forth it tentatively grasps

The power threads that make its beds until its final gasps

When beam returns its senses seethe, straining like a beast

When ions fly then gleams its eye and gluts itself in feast