The Biography of these Hours as Told through Random Actions and Movements

Photograph by Jose Padua
If Time were a foreign language
how long would it take me to master it?
To use it to ask simple questions from
other speakers of Time? Could I ever
discuss history and politics by driving
a truck down the interstate and flashing
the headlights on and off while watching
for the way other trucks change lanes,
which would indicate whether or not
they believed that history was cyclical
in nature and that a politics without
corruption was possible in our lifetime?
Could I ever write a poem with a shovel,
an elegy for lost loved ones that people
would be so moved by they’d memorize
the way I dug up the dirt, laid down
the seedling, then filled in the ground again,
stomping it with my foot, before shaking
the leftover earth from the shovel? If I
could express my love of life by leaving
the house more often, I would, walking
in these hard new shoes to Main Street,
greeting friends with the scraping of my
heels on the sidewalk, and looking up
to the sky or sideways at a brick wall
as a way of telling them I can stay longer
or that it’s time for me to go home. Some
days I feel like telling the world everything,
walking up the stairs making as little noise
as possible, stepping lightly on rasping wood,
and using just the slightest touch on the railing
to tell my story as I balance myself on my words.

-Jose Padua

The photograph was taken at the 2015 Apple Blossom festival in Winchester, Virginia by Jose Padua.

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