On time’s flight. That I were a bird to catch up with my lost youth. Walking down the streets of Strasbourg, down streets in a time-warped city, I am that person, but with so many added layers. It can get heavy. Not the lightness of the back then. I carry the years with me, not so much on my back. I hold them tightly in my arms, squeeze them to me as I pass by painful memories. The years have passed, but they don’t pass do they? I collect them, nurture them into a more and more me. They are beautiful flowers that blossom and fade as we walk our way. The years do not die or disppear. Walking the streets at dusk is a time travel, the air, warm and humid, speaks to my every cell. It lulls them into an understanding of time. The layers are time. How silly we are to measure time with mechanical devices. Our time must be measured in the exact same way the tree keeps time, our layers superimposed, some so fragile they seem almost nonexistent, translucid, but all the while they speak. Other layers are full and chunky, garish and loud, they spread beyond their realm. Are these the good layers? Are these the fertile years, when we were drenched in sunlight and fed ample rain? Or is that precipitation from a weeping year, we wept and wept through the tropical heated pain and grew ourselves a very strong imposing layer, a layer that reaches out and claims several others. Beware the fragile, translucid, the delicate layer of blossoming love and trust…. Yes, the layers are time and time must be measured in layers. So silly to say therefore that time flies. Time penetrates. It is far more powerful than a flighty, whispy leaf in the air. Time is all but fragile. Time is our wooden essence, that with which we become the strong oak whose wise eyes look on the growing brush, both indulgent and judging. That wise oak will stand strong and tall. We will stand strong and tall if we allow the years to feed us, layer us, strengthen us. Perhaps that is why the old can withstand so much. The layers of suffering, solidifying them into almost calcified, fossilized monoliths. And they stand tall and proud of their years. The bark to brag them out. But in the great storm they break. If they no longer are able to bend they will break. So those layers of time are both friend and foe. We must learn to grow strong but not rigid. To take nourishment from the years of pain but not to calcify. To become strong and supple. It is hard to learn. It is hard to see time for what it is. It is neither friend nor foe. Time is us. Time is our layers. Time is me. I am the clock and the measuring. Time cannot be linear because I feel the pain of so many yesterdays. The layers are neither hermetic nor seeping through each other and becoming one. The layers are separate, but like geological layers, the day filters straight through to the core sometimes, and there time vanishes. I am a child, a happy, scared, terrified, giggling child. That is time. That is today. It penetrates. It does not fly.