A Clock, Ticking


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I thought it was a faucet dripping,
the tap-tap-tapping of a blind man’s cane.
I thought it was a tiny hammer in a tinier fist,
one usually found pounding on a lectern.
Like those little footsteps, gallows-bound,
each second an egg being cracked open,
each second a fissure in time and space —
big enough to drive a Mack truck through.
It reminds me of my favorite aunt,
knitting needles clicking in another room,
she tut-tutting over my latest indiscretion.
Or it’s the smallest of beating horse-hearts.
The eternal breaking of the backs of fleas
between the fingernails of beauty.

Bruce McRae, a Canadian musician, came to poetry late but has enjoyed a large number of publications in the past 10 years, recently gaining airplay for his poems and songs in the U.K., Australia and the U.S.A. The So-Called Sonnets, is his first book, which this audio poem is an excerpt from. More information can be found on his website: bpmcrae.com.