Birds outside the window
Free to fly from tree to rooftop
And wherever they please
Between their song there’s silence
Pure and sweet. So much of it
It coats the window sill and makes us
Catch our breaths, this room is floating in it
Like a capsule in space
Now, days are elastic, we no longer run
From place to place to fit everything into
An invisible schedule, we allow time to stretch
And be itself, not beaten into submission
Cut into parcels and weighed up like gold
We let it be there, unfettered and fully itself
Like an ocean we might drown in or sail across
It’s there for us, to find beauty on our doorstep
And while away hours however we wish. To wander
Through the day as we’ve never done before
Call a friend in the afternoon, knowing they’ll be home too.
Read a book, plant flowers, and brush our hair slowly.
To really feel time running through us, to breathe it in
And be moved by it. It’s terrifying at times, this vastness
Of Time, if we could only befriend it, and live in it
As best we can, and float along its streams and eddies.
Then maybe it will all come good somehow.
Tamara von Werthern is an award-winning playwright based in Hackney.
You can read more about the success of her dystopian short film, I Don’t Want To Set The World On Fire, here.
Her play The White Bike, and climate change book Letters to the Earth, featuring her contribution, are available at Pages of Hackney bookshop on Lower Clapton Road, which is currently closed but still selling book tokens.