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Our Time

There was a time when I was not.
A time will come when I won’t be.
Between these aeons, there’s a dot,
a microscopic speck. That’s me.

What biochemical event
how many billion years ago
began the process that has meant
that when I say, ‘I love you so,’

those vowels and consonants affect
the air, your eardrums and your brain
in ways the higher intellect
cannot sufficiently explain?

The heart’s a bit of pumping gear.
It’s prone to blockages and leaks.
Some other force must engineer
that flush of colour in your cheeks:

some impulse, some primaeval need,
before we learned to stand up straight,
implanted in the human breed
so I don’t have too long to wait

for your familiar reply,
‘I love you too. I love you more,’
which grants me courage to defy
the dark behind, the dark before.