Instructions For Telling Time
It was two o'clock twice one night.
Maybe the church bell was drunk or maybe time
lingered on a bridge
distracted by the idea of water.
My grandfather's donkey was called Sasha.
He used to hit her.
The bell has a tongue and uses it
to say Yes. Yes. Yes. What if you could
say only one thing for the rest of your life,
how your mouth would blister.
A bell is like an ocean but more precise.
He was a carpenter, his hands
smelled like splinters,
sawdust lapped at his feet.
The bell remembers every time you were late,
has a list of your insomnia
in alphabetical order.
Once he cried because after many months
I went back to visit.