hourglass

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Hourglass
Robert Wrigley
Of his collection, an old man said, “So much time
standing still unless upended.”
Who has never wanted to turn around its passage?
The hour of love, the shudder at the edge
of the first kiss, the misstep and fall, the slip
that told too much of the momentary truth.

When Jace was four, he lay on his back
rotating minute by minute the three-minute
timer from a child’s game, and asked
“Do you know what this is, Daddy?” Then he told me
without looking away: “Time sugar.”
The end of such a sweetness is also an ache.

Regarding the metaphor for her figure,
I swear it was the vehicle that stopped time
and again too short; you could spend a year
loving the full swells out of and into which the spill
seemed minutely to cipher her voluptuousness,
though it was the middle made it all of a piece.

Old gnomon of the sundial, a shepherd’s tally stick, the water
clock’s drip-drop prefiguring the pendulum’s tock,
a day cloven into twelves sixty by sixty ticks around.
Or the stuff of glass subsiding in a glass
of such a shape, all I want to do, as time keeps passing,
is to watch it go by.

Photo by NeONBRAND on Unsplash

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