Time passes, scientists concede,
just not in the way we imagine.
Memory persuades us that the past is real,
that the events of our lives sail away
and are gone forever; in truth it is a portal,
a way to glimpse what still exists.

There is no actual difference
between past, present, and future.
What we did, loved, lost,
is no less real than what is happening
in the immediate moment–
the events are just inaccessible
because we now inhabit a different part of spacetime.

You could say we live in a “moving spotlight,”
pinned to an ever-changing present
while the past and future stretch all around us.

They are not missing, those who have left us.
Gone from the earth, they are
alive and well in the universe,
which in colossal, unceasing defiance
saves all that ever was.

Published by

Jean Ryan

Jean Ryan, a native Vermonter, lives in Lillian, Alabama. Her stories and essays have appeared in a variety of journals and anthologies. She has also published a novel, LOST SISTER. Her short story collections, SURVIVAL SKILLS and LOVERS AND LONERS, are available online. STRANGE COMPANY, a collection of short nature essays, is available in paperback as well as digital and audio editions.

One thought on “Timeless

  1. Happy Autumn! When I read your work Jean, like this thoughtful and eloquent insight you’ve just posted, I’m reminded of a line from one of Shakespeare’s poems “love comforteth like sunshine after rain.,”. That’s you. You provide the graceful understanding of the bigger picture. Thank you! Xoxo

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