You’re back then and later, someday and before, even soon and not yet. But lately you’re not at all now. And it’s making you scattered so: Present. The word. What is that to you?
You want to read it pretty and you want to read it true and because definitions are poems, you look it up, the way we tend to look things up.
Tap tap tap. Enter.
And you read a lot of things. Here and there… and there. And scroll… and again.
And somehow it isn’t enough. The fonts are ugly. The layout stupid. And it emits light… what?
And you think.
You walk to the bookshelf and pick up the ten-pounder.
Okay, so maybe it’s not ten pounds but it’s ten pounds.
And you cradle it over. And lay it on the table. And open it anywhere, kind of in half. It spreads out like it’s meant to. How long has it been? And it’s out and exhales like it’s comfortable.
Beautiful scroll, split. Curves, slides.
You glide your hand over tabs to the golden letters
and then… turn, turn,
forward, forward… too far.
Backward, back, forward…
there. And glide up and down and there:
present n. A moment in time perceptible as intermediate between past and future: now.
And then you look for it as “gift”. Because it’s something that you want.
present n. Something presented; a gift.
Scant… so then you head toward gift… On your way is Judy Garland (what a treat!) and a gargoyle and a gibbon and a glove. And then here:
gift n. Something that is bestowed voluntarily and without compensation.
And you go back to present. The now.
And right before it, (ha!) you didn’t tell me, is this (of course it is):
presence of mind n. The ability to think and act calmly and efficiently, especially in an emergency.
And it’s consciousness. You know. Even though it is not written. Not absence of mind but presence. And that is what you want.
And yeah. It’s an emergency. That though you are here, all the time here, you are simply not. And you are not thinking or acting calmly or efficiently about it. How can you? How will you? Can an alarm, say, every hour, pull you back to now? You don’t know. But you’re trying. You are really trying.