I closed my eyes as the sun kissed my forehead
and ran his warm fingers through my hair.
A bird’s two-tone cry reached my waiting ears
and brought with it memories of being a child
and hearing that same call again and again,
coming — I imagined — from the same bird
that was singing to me now.
The cool air on my bare arms became chilled
as a faint breeze wafted towards me,
as if the air itself had released a soft sigh of contentment
as I had.
The chipped mug in my hands was nearly forgotten,
along with the tea that steeped inside it,
forgotten but for the ghost of the flavor that haunted my tongue.
And suddenly I ceased to exist in that moment alone
and I existed in hundreds of thousands more that were just like it;
Just like it, but entirely different:
a different tea, a different mug,
a warmer day, a colder sun,
a different body than the one I inhabited now —
an older one, a younger one.
In that wonderful, impossible moment, I understood
how to travel in time
because there was no time to travel through.
As my molecules and atoms spread across
the vast nonexistence of time and perception
I lived a thousand lifetimes
and I lived my own life a thousand times over
and I lived forever
and I lived not at all.