A window upon the sky, vast and indifferent, herd of clouds rumbling silently to the East. And you, your back turned to it, form framed in the halflight of midday. I gazed from a distance, transfixed by nothing present, but rather an absence. Something wholly vacant from your smoothe flawless countenance.

She tapped her finger
To the tick of a grandfather clock.
She recalled
Nothing
In the past's kingdom hall.
Presently my eyes roved
From the dusty antique sentiments
Piled haphazardly on shelves
And in dim alcoves
To her regal statue face.
She asked,

Is this all?

Paging through a book of no consequence and reading not a word, she yet would not lift her eyes for some moments when I approached. She spoke in no tone, the word merely there, without maker to impart meaning nor purpose to reveal truth.
"Yes?"
I was afraid.

Amidst the shower of lights,
Where disembodied voices promised
The riches of progress,
She anticipated
Nothing
In the future's strange abode.
Her eyes on the bright screens,
(Click-whirring machines
Heralding man's genius
And gross vanity)
Were dull, without depth.
She asked,

Is this all?

I asked her what she read. She answered. I forgot. The seat beside her was empty. I took it hesitantly. She did not flinch, no discomfort at all. Her eyes saw me only as one of many objects occupying space, a stimulus to which she must respond. We exchanged further words, my voice running away with me and hers remaining firmly rooted. The sun filled the space between us as evening progressed. Barriers of formality fell as if of rice paper, noticeable only in how quickly they were crossed. Her passive disinterest drew me still further inward.

We sat in the gloaming
On a pigeon stained park bench
And in her own way
She was happy.
Each moment cherished,
Then thrown away.
I placed my hand on hers,
My mind filled with image.
Of icewalls, towering, creeping
In the spaces between centuries.
She smiled and I shivered
She explained,

This is all.

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