I've watched clocks since I was small.
My collection of watches startles some,
different day, different watch.
Heaven help me if I forget to put my watch on;
glancing at my naked wrist 100 times a day
is guaranteed to drive me crazy.
I'm also obsessive about the minute hands
all being in sync,
even a minute difference is irritating—
don't get me started on digital clocks,
whose differences can be as minute as hundredths of a second.

I knew a man who collected clocks;
presenting him with a fancy new clock
was the best present you could give him,
even better if it had some elaborate artistry
like an archer taking aim with a bow and arrow,
or dancing dutch men taking a bow.
He loved cuckoo clocks.
Heaven help you if you happen to visit at noon,
when they all went off at the same time— almost.
It's even more challenging to get cuckoo clocks in sync.
At least my wristwatches are quiet.

I like to have a clock in every room too.
My husband's in charge of the grandmother clock
his father left him;
if he forgets to wind it every Thursday
it will bong to get his attention.
We think it's haunted.
My favorite is a ceramic clock my friend
hand-painted with trees standing tall in the wind.
Every time I glance at it,
I feel like my friend is waving hello.

I don't know why knowing the time
has always been so important to me.
Before I understood what time was,
I used to ask my mother what time it was.
She'd laugh and ask if I had a hot date.
Now that I'm retired with nowhere I need to go,
I still want to know what time it is.

The only thing I know for sure
is that time is precious.
No matter how much time we're allotted,
we waste a lot of it,
and even if we fill each minute
there will never be enough of it.

~Elise Skidmore ©2024

Note–As you may know, when I’m working on the PAD challenges I use prompts from the Writer’s Digest site for inspiration. Today’s prompt was to write a homonym poem. If you aren’t familiar with the term, a homonym is either (or both) a homograph (word spelled the same with different meanings and possibly different pronunciations) or a homophone (word that is pronounced the same but has different spellings). So if you happen to notice words that are repeated, when normally I would’ve looked for a way to avoid the repetition, that’s intentional.

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