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" Diary of the Night of the Day of the Dawn of the Dead | 2008 | Lacuna Beach "

04.28.08 7:15 p.m.

I would rather have had one breath of her hair, one kiss from her mouth, one touch, than an eternity without it.  

-From "City of Angels"


Carpe Bombing

Time goes faster because it is no longer broken down into night and day, but Work and Melanie. So much of my sleeping evenings occur when I am on-call - when any brat with a momentary social issue can knock on my door with impunity - that the sleep doesn't seem to count. I fall asleep only after tucking in two-dozen boys and I wake up a handful on minutes before nudging them all back to consciousness. (Unlike my coworker, I do this by knocking on their doors and telling them to wake up, instead of by screaming eighties songs while wearing only a towel.) My free time focuses on making the most of our weekends until Melanie leaves for the summer.

When I was a kid, each day was an interminable adventure. I can fully reconstruct only a handful now, but the space between waking and sleeping seemed infinite. I know I'm far from the only one to have felt the hastening of time to adulthood. Now I get surprised that it is already the end of April. The school year began a couple of weeks ago as far as I'm concerned, Emily left me a few days ago. I met Melanie in the snow and the trees now bud green. My school put down grass seed just a few mornings ago and now there are lawnmowers cutting the grass. Does it grow so quickly? Have I come unstuck in time?

I remember so little because I have so few landmarks. Every week resembles the one before. The schedule so fixed for my charges that it rubs off on me. They act like a forty-five minute period takes forever and I recall being on the other side of the desk and thinking the same. Now, it is nine increment of the clock, not forty-five. When I see Melanie, I am so eager to do something outside my apartment and bed because it is different. It is something to make the time pass a little slower, something to cherish and translate.

I've come to realize how much I hate it here because it is so easy it is to let the days slip through my fingers out of isolation. What else am I to do?

But then someone asks what I did last weekend and it feels like it took forever. Time does not fly in Melanie's presence, it nearly stops. My working hours feel like a commercial in fast forward, but making smores with her over my electric range, having her fall asleep on my chest during a horror movie/bad Chinese food feast, bantering foreplay before she tackles me to the bed are feature length and 3D. All the above was just one evening.

In the midst of my fear that the summer will rush by at a snails pace is the concern that it won't. Last summer was so recent, it really seems that it just happened. Will I have time to miss Melanie or will I just zoom through my time at Summer Institute for the Gifted without stopping to take a breath? How long until I'm 30? 40? Dead? Is there a way of slowing the passage of time so I can smell the roses before they wilt?

Soon in Xenology: Beltane.

last watched: Blair Witch Project
reading: The Illuminatus! Trilogy
listening: Live At Fingerprints Warts & All

" Diary of the Night of the Day of the Dawn of the Dead | 2008 | Lacuna Beach "

Thomm Quackenbush is an author and teacher in the Hudson Valley. Double Dragon publishes four novels in his Night's Dream series (We Shadows, Danse Macabre, and Artificial Gods, and Flies to Wanton Boys). He has sold jewelry in Victorian England, confused children as a mad scientist, filed away more books than anyone has ever read, and tried to inspire the learning disabled and gifted. He is capable of crossing one eye, raising one eyebrow, and once accidentally groped a ghost. When not writing, he can be found biking, hiking the Adirondacks, grazing on snacks at art openings, and keeping a straight face when listening to people tell him they are in touch with 164 species of interstellar beings. He likes when you comment.

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