For his Sunday morning ritual, my father deemed only the egg-timer reliable enough to ensure perfect 5-minute eggs. He would turn the sand into one end of the glass vial, and show my brother and me how to submerge the eggs with a spoon, carefully, one by one in boiling water. The eggs would tremble, their plump white ovals hopping up and down as if hurting to get out, hitting the bottom of the pot with quick knocking thumps gentle enough to keep their shells from cracking,
While the sand trickled through the vial's narrow neck from one long blister into the other, balancing time above gravity, making time visible; and we watched, entranced, as the seconds shifted past our eyes in a steady thin thread.
We could almost feel ourselves growing older.
And when the sand stopped running, we were invariably amazed at having allowed five whole minutes of ourselves to drift away while we did nothing but stare after them.