Wednesday, July 10, 2013

the secret life of a grandfather clock

3 AM can strike through many nights
without a sound but a ruffling into dreams.
Enough to bring pause, retreat, waking.

There's something long ago that's taken on breathing.

Of course! A dead uncle's grandfather clock,

now gone to abstract seizures of time's aching
dim memories, a brute nostalgia for that house
now gone to others. Where did the clock go?
It's no longer making those children shiver
in perfect terror of its presence ticking
in a hallway. It's gone away lost to think.

Old, it struggles through its moments

of standing with a broken mustache
on its face, standing in some purgatory 
it sends odd hours to troubled sleeping.
That tall clock once alert and sentient 
now droops in a somewhere nowhere.

The flight of seeds is random myriad.

One sinks down growing generations
of patient oaks harvested for clocks
imprisoning eccentric grandfathers.

Where is that great clock, is it living,

or did its governor shrug, go to ruin?
I think it's still thinking, breathing...

In my grain and my dark knots,

distant rivers still flow their poems,
hillside gnomes and fairies murmur 
tales long sunken to my substance.
In my gears and ingenious spring,
mysteries of minerals turn and coil
around psychosis of my old dæmon 
orphaned by the absconded gods.
If my chronic and nightly musing
on paradox and fate comes calling
as a dream inside your dreaming,
let it strengthen your imagination.  
I never meant to frighten children
as if a specter in assembled form.
I only meant to tell you children
about duration's freakish presence.

Even in senility and my far ruin,
I'll come a-tocking your 3 AM.

~ TB, 2013

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