Time behaves differently around you; the way trees are around the time autumn comes around. Or how rowdy schoolboys turn into dulcet-toned sweethearts around the geography teacher who’s a dead ringer for Rita Hayworth.
Time is not time around you. It is an imposter. Around you, time does not move like the staid tick and tock on the wall clock. Time is fluid, time is a ballet. Time does not speed from one end of the room to the other like a tango, time glides. Time is mellifluous. It is water.
And so it is that the three months will fly, while two weeks crawl.
So it is, that one measures the change of season with every mercurial dip on the thermostat, and every leaf that changes hue. With the putting away of sandals and pulling out of jumpers.
So it is, that I count the days not in laughter and lovemaking, but in quiet that stretches like bedclothes on neighbourhood washing lines. Eliot had coffee spoons. I need ladles. It would still not do.
You came and time went berserk. It speeds up and then it slows down. One morning it’s frenzied, by noon it is placid. On Fridays, time takes a long shower, does her eyes, takes out her good shoes. On Fridays, we await you.
You enter the house like a magnificent hurricane, all hair and smile, and teeth, and eyes like quicksilver. You are the most beautiful disaster I have known. Beauty that sets my teeth on edge. I watch you do dishes and my heart slams itself against my ribs like a beloved punishment. Sometimes, I hold my breath so long, my chest yells. Sometimes when you are not kissing me, my mouth tastes like iron as a reminder.
I am throwing out all clocks. Stopping all watches. I am burning the calendars and day turns to night and I ignore it. This is another monster under the bed. If I squeeze my eyes shut long enough it will leave. If I wrap my sleeves around my head, days-weeks-months will cease to have meaning.
And when I go so long without being called I forget my name, you will come home. And the monsters will have long gone. And you will say nothing but tell me everything – of all the days that came and went, stolen while you lay elsewhere. And it will be right. It will be good.
It will be time for time again.