The sky is as high and blue
as it was all those years ago.
The air is crispy, crunchy clean,
sharp. Campus is quiet,
students sit on the benches I sat on. Read books.
carry the heavy bags as I did. They stroll in groups.
The air is still: stopped. Life here
exists outside of the rush of work
and traffic, it’s an oasis, calmed on the
edges of the city.
Climbing the spiral, outdoor stairs,
I cling to the railing, don’t look down,
slightly full of vertigo,
as before. Memories come back suddenly,
alarmingly. Twists of the past, intertwined with now.
I could be eighteen, nineteen, twenty again, slightly too
plump in black leggings and oversized top.
But, I’m not. A lecturer passes and I’m closer in age
to him that the students surrounding us .
But it’s there, making me catch my breath,
as though there isn’t enough oxygen here.
Caught between then and now, I’m finally time-travelling,
poised on an edge, here, but somehow there too.
aching, pained, unhappy, lonely,
her face young and bare of make-up, too pale for the day that awaits.
Published in New Coin 44, number 2, December 2008