Is 300 Seconds Ever Enough?

When I’m 5, my sister is 12. 

She plays Super Mario World,

sitting on her bed and I watch,

content. I watch her nimble

fingers press the buttons, watch

little Mario jump on the Goombas.

Clear the gaps in the 2D earth.

When she gets to the end of the castle,

the princess is not there. She’s always

never there. When I’m 5, I never see

the end of the game. My sister stops

playing with me around. Switches

to other games. Stops playing 

games all together as the years go on.

I don’t see the game again

until I am 18, my sister 25. I

am alone in the childhood living room

we left behind ten years earlier.

The music is the same, the pixels

still in place, but everything is different

with the controller in my hand. 

I play with caution. Making the jumps

exact. Aiming for Goomba heads

with precision. I want to play it right.

But I game over just before the finish

of the third world, unaware of the time limit.

Candria Slamin is a recent college graduate from Virginia, who is trying to find her place within the writing world. Candria has taken to poetry to explore the intersections of her life. In her spare time, she is busy being a nerd on Twitter at @candyslam_

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