I would not say it hangs, nor hovers; the former is too unpurposeful, the latter too predatory. Even when time seems completely still, as it appears out of the window this morning (is it morning?) it manages to pass anyway. How does it do that? Perhaps in the same unseen way I can stand quite still, silent, but my heart keeps beating; measuring out my unknown reckoning. I am still, but there is the counting down inside. One day, it will stop, the heart. For now, time is still, the heart beats some and I hear a new drop of rain fall. Or is it an old one?
On Christmas Night I opened the window of the back bedroom, fully. I looked at the Moon with the children and showed them Jupiter which was beyond bright, close to, at the Moon’s right hand. The clouds swirled around and over the pair, coming and going, creating that oil on water rainbow effect like a puddle at a petrol station. I thought about that book, The Moon’s a Balloon. *Robert Morley or *Derek Nimmo, some raconteur or wit at any rate. I’d never really understood the title before but it made sense looking out of the window with the children, watching Jupiter, and the Moon drift upwards in the clouds.
The window would not shut properly. In time, all the windows here will have to be replaced. Earlier on Christmas Day I had travelled past some fine windows that were once replaced: over twenty years ago, now. I knew the person that made the replacement frames. Those frames, the windows, have outlived their carpenter, by more than twenty years. Maybe that’s why some people have a Christian faith – to avoid that fate – the one of being outlived by inanimate objects. I can’t see it for myself, even if it is all wrapped up in a story about a carpenter called Jesus. One day I might change my mind about that, the greatest of all hedged bets. I hope not. In the meantime, perhaps I will outlive a balloon, at least.
*Turns out it was David Niven.
As I edited this I saw the odd phrase that would stand as evidence of the passage of time. One day modern people will laugh at the once prehistoric habits of filling our internal combustion conveyances with fossil fuels and Derek Nimmo will be, sadly, long forgotten…