« a descriptive landscape of genius loci | Main | of primary conflict »

time as a phenomenon

neither of us wants to leave despite the cold, the air is crisp and the night sky has a fantastic clarity this time of winter; the stars seem nearer. the streets are mostly deserted with only one or two cars passing by. we have been standing here for a time that neither of us could describe; time that has strayed into a loop. the city is entirely removed from the space that we now occupy – a bubble only defined by the dimmed light of a nearby street lamp and cycling traffic light. it is the traffic light that gives the only definition of passing time, a reminder that even now this night, time cannot be stopped. time as a human invention – a framework of description - is being measured by the passing of colored lights, a loop that has no function in the absence of traffic but to reference time into particular subdivisions that make up one of the only globally agreed upon measurement systems. why should time be divided into base 60 intervals and the second into tenths? what is the value of a second in this new world of physics that depends upon mass? is it yet another desperate plea to measure the worth of our knowledge in attempting to describe our surroundings in space? - a phenomenon of human invention to feel less lonely in such a vast space.