The Taste of Time

Even when he could not see the clock, he could always taste the time.

–Daniel Boorstin, describing a 1600’s clock for telling time after dark, using small containers of spice.

Remember when time tasted

sour, astringent nights

you spent tossing past nutmeg,

past fennel and turmeric?

You had lost the velvety

minutes, the full-bodied

hours, forgotten

the times you stayed up

until mustard—

forgotten cinnamon

moments in deepening dusk,

waking at anise beneath a starry

sky and melting into another

dream, nights when the calico

cat leapt onto the quilt

and dozed beside you

as you slept through cloves

and saffron and coriander,

then rose at cayenne.

Pam Lewis

Pam Lewis’ work has appeared in various regional and national publications. Now retired, she enjoys the many opportunities for learning, and the natural beauty of Madison, WI.

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