Between Then and Now

photo of clocks at MOSS by FS

Photo by FS — clocks on the wall of a Toronto shop


Between then and now
(if by then you mean the last time
we saw each other to get caught up with the happenings inside and outside of us and
if by now you mean right now
as we are both here, together as in HERE — this point, this
moment, this place this NOW in a shared space that we inhabit)
she fell on the way back from the bathroom, the private bathroom in the private room in the cancer hospital and as she fell she didn’t put her (skeletal) hands out. Instead she raised them to her chest to contain a bursting heart and her partner caught her before she hit the ground and only then could she let herself relax, only then could she compeltely let herself go into the shaking arms that held her as she said in a voice that sounded like it came from a much stronger body, ” Oh! I think I’m dying now, I love you,” and her partner wrapped her up close — feeling life leave a body, energy leave the room,  a beloved heartbeat


Between then and now
(if by then you mean the last time there was a carefree moment in each of our worlds when we could get together and sip coffee and comment on passing fashions and smile at the silliness of wearing camouflage of a city street the has never known war and if by now you mean right now as we are talking)
he got into a brand-new truck and drove and drove and drove not knowing where to go not
about police bulletins asking the public to be on the lookout for a missing elderly man,
who’s a Dad and a widower and a grandfather
who once had gorgeous handwriting who once was in love and passionate about printing and gardening, and the opera, and cars, and meals of meat-and-potatoes and playing golf and who doesn’t understand dementia or how he ended up in the hospital a day later because they found him a long way from home sleeping in his truck in the winter by the side of the road.

Between then and now
(if by then you mean a point in time and if by now you mean another point in time) the care accident gave them both traumatic brain injuries because the 19-year old driver in the brand-new Mercedes didn’t stop, and he didn’t stop because he didn’t see the line of cars waiting at the red light, and he didn’t see the line of cars waiting at the red light because he was texting and he didn’t put the brakes on so he ploughed into their car and a year later they can’t read or organize or sleep well and they need special glasses because their vision is affected and their heads hurt and they can’t take care of their kids or stay calm, and it’s clear that a heart doesn’t have to stop for a life to be over. and he’s only 19 and his mother said, “No worries. It’s not that bad. You didn’t kill anyone.”

Between then and now
(if by then you mean — goodness only knows what you mean by then because then might be past or it might be future, I only know it doesn’t mean now)
but what I know,



not with any certainty mind you, but with a belief that is beyond certainty, is that now is here, with you and me and breath and heart and sight and sound and sensation beyond words
and that


what matters



About FS

Toronto, Canada. Writing about slices of life, the moments and minor details of which come into awareness or out of imagination and the spaces inbetween.
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1 Response to Between Then and Now

  1. Maxine says:

    The best. You are an artist.

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