My thoughts about upcoming changes mix with
reminders of what’s still left to be done.
The new chapter is only a few pages away — I can feel it.
I am anxious, and I flip the pages too fast:
calling out “next!” like an annoyed cashier
to my precious days as a twenty-something year old.
It’s not right, I know. I know. I remember how
she told me in words and in her wrinkly sage eyes
(I’ll never forget that pleading gaze)
to savor right now, before my time runs thin and spirals into the drain.
I don’t know why I can’t take her word.
It must be that subtle streak of early twenties fatalism
keeping me on my toes, as a hitchhiker making his way out to somewhere.
But where? What? Doesn’t matter. Keep moving. Keep moving,
because if I stop too long to think,
the unanswered questions crawl up from the back of my mind:
What on earth am I doing here?
And what are you doing here, too?
They never go away, after all — every morning,
I peek and still find them.
Silly me. Block them out. Where’s the next stop? Right.
At the bathroom mirror I momentarily drop my guard,
forgetting to forget. That reflection always gets me:
seeing the still unfamiliar, curious creature
that people have given a name and role, and I play out of habit.
The near future, current obligations, and open questions
resurface again. Not now. Now’s really not a good time.
I turn the valve all the way to cold. Slow down.
The glossy, quiet, and coherent stream of water exits the faucet,
and gracefully conforms to the finest edges of my hand. Laminar flow.
Dear laminar flow,
If there is a design, you must have been conceived in it early,
and revisited multiple times so that you came out just right.
I caress it respectfully. That silky feeling perplexes me so much,
and reminds me that I really am just a stupid caveman,
because I know that no progress in science will ever penetrate its magic.
Feeling that mystical flow, a curiosity that manages to exceed the
confusion I have about my own existence,
only temporarily extinguishes my existentialism.
But I accept its gift, sighing in its relaxation,
yet shaking my head at the same time, because
what a downright convoluted reality this is.