Sunday, May 8, 2011

The Clock

I have a clock
next to by my bed.
Every night
it keeps me awake.

unceasing stilettos on slate

It reminds me
of you

and my last trip
to the top

to your matchbox room,
warm enough to hatch chicks.

You wanted water
or maybe another blanket

or maybe just to know what time it was,
because I looked at that clock,
and I hated it.

taunting tapping on tiny legs

No need to say,
no clock was ever so melancholy
or so succinctly reminded one
of the measured, meticulous march of the minutes,
the hours,
the days,
the months.

It ticked and clicked  
more loudly than ever need be
and haunted my creaking climb to you

punctuating pain with perfect precision

And there you lay,
a crepe-paper doll,
cocooned within the quiet of quilts.

I could never understand why you kept that clock,
how in that cloistered room
time could have any meaning .

The silence between the seconds was life
         holding its breath,
the narrative of a house dying.         

It had been a home
that made up the mystery of my mother’s life.
And now it was an old house
with a clock,
and a death,
that took more time than ever need be.

I was twelve years old,
yet at the top of the stair,
I wished I were younger
and could creep, courageous,
into the camphor rooms as I once did
and slide my fingers across
the forbidden bric -o- brac of your life.

The secrecy of knick-knacks and dust.

But I was afraid
that if I lingered a little longer
the clock would stop.

I wanted to tell you I loved you.

But I did not.


  1. Sad but lovely, I enjoyed reading it.

  2. Very well done..especially the stacato italics of time. I wonder howpersonal thid is..a grandparent perhaps?

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  4. Yes, is personal. Is about my Granny.

  5. I like the meter, Miriam, and the alliteration, especially "measured, meticulous march of the minutes" and "cocooned within the quiet of quilts". Well done again :-)

  6. Thank you So much for the feedback and kind words :-)

  7. I love this, many layers, textures, and emotions, wrapped in. I did feel that comforting "quilted" connection in it with ones we feel so much love for, amazingly written sweetie! I see it was for your grandmother in your comments too...I had always been so very close to mine. You really weaved this so well! BEAUTIFUL

  8. Kind of the perfect read on a fog filled night as this one when all else is completely still.

  9. Well, Miriam, I am not a poetry aficionado but I do read a lot of it... I love this. Thanks for sharing.

  10. I am humbled by our kind comments. Thank you so much.

  11. I've readed it more then once, with every additional reading, there was another layer. Thank you for those wonderful blog post. So many feeling and dimensions are there. Thank you so much.

  12. Autumn. Thank you SO much for you kind words. It is so rewarding to know someone reads a poem a second time ~ and finds something new. I am grateful to you.

  13. hello, miridunn.

    my name is nieves and i come from de north of spain (asturias). i found you trougth a person i follow in twitter: cebee.
    i don´t know if his name is exactly like that, but i know that he likes writing novels.

    i like poetry as you and it´s great to read you even when i don´t understand everything.
    tralator helps just a little bit.

    my best to you

  14. I love the unceasing stilettos on slate

  15. Poignant...
    the secrecy of knick-knacks and dust...a line that makes you stop dead in your tracks to reflect on it!

  16. Beautifully said, as usual :)

  17. I appreciate all your wonderful comments! They really move me!

  18. Really beautiful Mridunn - stunning - I love that I can feel the energies of everything including the clock, your granny and you so palpably. Thank yoU!

  19. Very moving Miriam,

    I like the pace and phrasing. So lovely and poignant. I could see the young you in my mind's eye.

  20. it starts off ordinarily...and becomes something very personally said...
    this is the true understanding of time...finding the connection of something like a clock...that the usual...but it might just as easily be a tree...or someone that you brought into the world...this was very powerful...when one becomes enveloped in it...liked it...

  21. The ultimate regret ... I wanted to tell you I loved you. But I did not.

    Great flow and emotional ripple.

  22. Quite wonderful. I heard the clock in my head. Reminded me of sleeping at my grandparent's house where you could not hear the clock during the day and it boomed its tocks in endlessness at night. Thank You miridun