Tuesday, May 31, 2011

And counting

A decade past deciding
three hundred fifteen million seconds
and a lifetime away

Even now, that powerful wave of time at my back,
I know as much about my father as before
and he easily sums me in a plaque

Last night's telephone call tells me he is tired
as ever
I hear joy and hope in his voice
and wonder how many seconds
past hanging up that it will last

Three hundred fifteen million
little freeze-frame opportunities
and still not enough

I didn't even stop to think about
the seconds lost to my mother

I wonder how much of the day
my grandparents sit, silently, reverently
as they mark the seconds
each stroke the shuddering stiffness
of another lost friend
Each, for one second, the
tireless hand
moving around the face of an anachronism

Three hundred fifteen million-
how many left?
each moment (tick) I waste
at my desk reading (tick, tick)
each weekend (tick, tick, tick)
not spent
another one hundred seventy thousand gone

Three hundred fifteen million seconds
and that many more gone

Spring 2001

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