After rain after many days without rain,
it stays cool, private and cleansed, under the trees,
and the dampness there, married now to gravity,
falls branch to branch, leaf to leaf, down to the ground
where it will disappear – but not, of course, vanish
except to our eyes. The roots of the oaks will have their share,
and the white threads of the grasses, and the cushion of moss;
a few drops, round as pearls, will enter the mole’s tunnel;
and soon so many small stones, buried for a thousand years,
will feel themselves being touched.
Lingering in Happiness by Mary Oliver
Time moves whether we acknowledge it or not.
We know this.
Time passing without our watching, without our conscious observance, is freeing and joyous. The years and months come and go without so much as a fleeting thought crossing our minds, and we awake one morning to realize that we haven't watched a single day happen. Or, rather, we have watched them all happen, but we haven't thought about their happening. We have only thought about the moments, as each comes and goes.
Sometimes, though, another thing happens altogether and time passes as we consciously watch. We watch and experience and think and plan as each new moment materializes and then fades away. Observing our lives in this way allows for a beautiful and full report on our progression (or digression). But this can be torturous. Instead of living inside the moments, we are watching them happen from the perspective of an on-looker, allowed to comment and judge the choices we are making. We watch and cringe and laugh and celebrate and grit our teeth and worry and cheer and promise to try harder tomorrow.
But, every once in awhile, as I experienced this morning, both seem to happen simultaneously. Time moves, runs away, and then stops dead in its tracks. And I am left suspended while all of my thoughts/feelings/judgements/worries/excitements/plans/fears catch up and then hit all at once.
My best friend is leaving.
I'm almost twenty-one.
Many of my friends are graduating from college.
And I am next.
Everything is changing, as everything always does. I haven't noticed for so long, and now that I notice again, the change is drastic. And exciting. And terrifying.
For now, I would like to linger in this space. I would like to feel, and think, and experience, and cherish.
I would really love to linger here.