There is time, but you can’t have it.
It isn’t something your senses can perceive or enjoy as clearly as you do all other physical dimensions. It is not static, but it only moves in one direction, and you can’t move freely through it the way you move through space. Time is an idea you can try to entertain, though almost always unsuccessfully. It’s a brain-hurting, head-spinning, mind-blowing concept, and a slippery one too.
Time passes; you can only take some time, but then you have to give it back, and ultimately let it go by. What a funny expression, to “keep” time. For all the clocks in the world, you can’t keep it. There’s no such thing as keeping, having time. It never stops, not even for a second, not even for you.
The closest thing to taking hold of time—to manipulating it—is remembering and imagining.
That’s what time travel really is, or at least a very good imitation. Memories can reverse time and make it repeat itself over and over, at will.
Dreams can speed up time and turn it into something it could otherwise never be.
Ironically, however, memories are just as unreliable as plans are.
We dwell on the past and we pine for the future, but we hardly ever stay still or quiet enough to feel the present and realize the value of now. It’s everything we really have: this very moment, and the moment is quick, and by the time you realize it it is over. Tick, tock… poof!
Regrettably, the average person (myself included) is not equipped to manage time to its full potential, let alone comprehend it—especially time’s duality of being virtually unlimited by itself, yet so very short for people. The days drag, but the years fly, and there are eons on each side of our beginning and end that go on (as far as humans are concerned) forever in each direction.
We finally understand some of it as we age, like the gravity of what time eventually does to us all, or the relative nature of its speed which is, in turn, sad or satirical, depending on how you look at it (and, of course, the absurdity of the whole thing).
Time’s worth can only be measured in retrospect, and in units not of minutes, hours, or days, but in sentiments—it’s not about the amount of time you had to spent, but how did you spend it.
Knowing that I don’t have much of it, and that I can’t keep however little I have for myself, I like to take note of the passing of time and, as a hobby, to record who and what I spent it on. Lately, as the world has been put on pause and time has become irrelevant, I am particularly aware of the other three dimensions for the first time in my adult life. I was so preoccupied with schedules and deadlines and outlines and backlogs that I often didn’t have the chance to appreciate space.
Time is finite, but space I have lots—with heights to reach, lengths to go, berth to give.
Now, I bear witness to the forces at work within.