Time

Isn’t it strange how life is always changing, around the sun, we are rearranging,
But so perfectly in place each and every day that 24 hours is always the same.

And yet, I’m spinning, we’re spinning. And I’m flipping out, no wonder my head is so filled with doubt,
Life is happening on a cosmic merry-go-round.

I’m always twisting and twirling, saying, “slow this thing down,” 
but to my surprise there’s no way to get out.

So I sit here with that headache from those rides at the fair, the ones where you vomit into the thin spinning air.

I didn’t buy this ticket, I didn’t stand in a line, but somehow I’m on it and this ride is called Time….

It won’t stop, no!
Won’t even slow down,
but sometimes the rotation brings me back around,

To the places I’ve been, 
to the feelings I’ve felt, 
to the moments she left me to breathe and be still.

The moments she stepped out, 
so that I could take in
the magnitude of the situation
to replay them again.

She left me in childhood, when summer sun would not fade.

She left me and my sister in the yard when we played.

She left me in the school halls with newly learned facts.

She left me when I saw Him carrying his backpack.

She leaves me in moments when the passion is great.

She leaves when new life from my body greets its first days.

She leaves me when grief is so big that I must just lay.

She leaves me when pain etches it’s own pathways.

And though she leaves me quick, to slowly embrace,
She returns with a vengeance to pick up the pace.

For time must move faster with each year we age,
so that when the end comes, a blur is all we must face.

The haze from the people and places we’ve passed, unfocused for it was all spinning so fast.

Did you catch glimpses of the sun and sky, did you stop to take in the thoughts behind your eyes?

And then in an instant she decides to stand still 
and she whispers that she hopes your life was a thrill.

And with her departing, your brain hits rewind, 
and in one final breath you close your eyes,
and relive the whole ride of your twirling with Time.

By: Stacy Johnson, 5-1-19

Forever, and After

I sit on the ground…. the earth pulses beneath me.

The wind blows my hair. 

I breathe in. 

Look around. 

Listen. 

As beautiful as it all is, I can hardly fathom the periods this place has endured to make it suitable for me to sit right here, right now. Breathing in this oxygen. 

The violence this earth has accepted, even welcomed… and here we are.

Me breathing in and exhaling, is its gift to me…

I watch as a Butterfly floats about on the breeze. 

She is whimsical and flirtatious in her movements, coming close then ascending my grasp…

I turn my eyes slowly from the sun and sky until they hit green. 

An old Tree branches out above me, reaching its long sturdy arms in an attempt to thank the sun with a hug.  I wish it could tell me its stories… 

And I just sit and stare. Words, Vocabulary, Language—- it all escapes me….This is how I worship now.  

The warmth forces my eyes closed. Tears fall. I am here, getting to do THIS… 

Sometimes, my mortality and the impermanence of it all is overwhelming and I’m silenced to tears. 

 I hear the lyrics in my mind, “Like violence, you have me forever and after, like violence-you kill me, forever and after.”

I think on the relationship that is time,  and the earth, and humanity and it is a violent affair indeed, it always has been.  And, it does have me,  forever and even after. 

The very particles of my being are paradoxical, arising from the stuff of Matter and Antimatter, and just as the conditions battled it out for us to evolve, so too, will we return to that state of chaos after our galaxy collides with another. 

Our dust, will be the beginning of another’s evolution and that is what is meant by eternity…

I am grateful, I am at peace, and I am paradoxically,  contained violence. Forever, and after…

Thanks for reading….

*** lyrics belong to Blink 182’s “Violence.”