The Opposite of Time

By Brian Hugenbruch in Issue One, November 2021

The opposite of Time is Might-Have-Been.
We travel through the tempered void and thus
can change the stream of time to flatter us,
but currents pull us toward what we’ve seen
has come to pass. It lives within us still.
How many restless empires have we torn
down, broken, with their murderers unborn?
How long do we remember who they’ve killed?
How mangled have we made our histories,
those scarred and damning records of events
that never happened, but we can’t unsee?
Our souls are trapped within biographies,
and time is now the prison that prevents
a world of peace, of love–of might-have-been.

© Brian Hugenbruch

Brian Hugenbruch

Brian Hugenbruch is a speculative fiction author and poet living in Upstate NY with his wife and their daughter (and some unruly pets). By day, he writes information security programs to protect your data on (and from) the internet. His poetry has also appeared in Eye to the Telescope, Penumbric Spec, Liquid Imagination, and Apparition Lit. You can find him on Twitter @Bwhugen, on Instagram @the_lettersea, and at No, he’s not sure how to say his last name, either.

Poetry by Brian Hugenbruch
  • The Opposite of Time