…not that I can tell the difference
between an instant and a moment–
What is, exactly, the fundamental unit
of time? Is it a pause, or is it a question
of how the equation’s processes
are organized? Where is the boundary
between thriving and decay? When
do cobwebs begin to appear
in the corners of the mind? Does
the soul, too, become dust, or
is it like zero, pivoting on an axis
that has no location? Is time
elemental like earth, like fire?
Can it fall into ruin? –or is it
integral to the devil’s work, a way
of placing things on a line, consecutive
and immutable? Is slow really
opposite to fast, or, in fact, only
a different way of measuring?–and
where exactly is an instant to be
found? Can it be held in place, or
does it have no material form, no
law to explain it, no real identity at all?
The NaPoWriMo prompt today was to make your own poem from an Emily Dickinson poem. I chose Crumbling is not an instant’s Act (1010). I went through and selected words and, using them in order, wrote my own poem around them. This is a method I often employ, using words from all kinds of sources. Emily is a good source.
For some reason what I wrote reminded me of Dylan’s Love Minus Zero/No Limit. OK, I did kind of borrow “like ice, like fire”. Here’s my favorite version, by Joan Baez.