MELTING CLOCKSWe were ready for another visualization exercise."Let's try to understand time," someone said. Well I know, nothing new there but we all knew that we really had to keep working at it.As usual we had to agree on an environment, but we needed something original. Far too often we had watched Newton's apple or sat with Einstein on the same old tram moving away from the clock tower near the patent office in Bern. Most folks just take forever to let go of the idea of things happening in a simple linear timeline.So I said, "Why not make it a lonely spot with no distractions? Hot and arid. A place just made for introspection way out in the wilderness. We can use clocks again but this time we'll make them melt in the heat. What's more, we will be the clocks. As they melt down, this is to be our metaphor for letting go of any silly thoughts of time as some sort of one-dimensional sequencing of reality."We didn't mind at all when someone else came along. We had all managed to melt down quite nicely so we were about finished anyway. However we were struggling with thoughts of time.It wasn't difficult to see our visitor had come up from the earth plane. He would very probably remember nothing at all of the encounter.Even if he did, no one would ever believe it was for real. Goodness knows where we all used to go to in our dreams or what we brought back from them.Funny thing is we actually knew he was some sort of artist. You just can't hide what you are where we hang out. All these years later, sorry perhaps I should say another time, another place, we sometimes still drop down to see how he painted us.So how do you think he would have painted you?endMelting Clock was published in Bewildering Stories, Issue 428, 2011.First appeared, Second Place Arts Pagoda Forum Short Story Competition on VoicesNet, 2004.