Night begins in disquiet, pacing back and forth,
Disturbed by spoons crossing swords with forks
Banging on plates as against shields,
Clinking glasses like missiles pinging helmets.
Rumbling low, a water stream is drumming
An aluminum sink, bottom of a boat.
Beyond the wall, cars whoosh by like subway trains.
Passersby in threes or fours are chortling birds.
Two houses down, a woman hollers faintly at a bawling child.
Cats scrambling after prey kick boxes bumping together as they fall.
A small animal is making tiny scraping noises inside the ceiling.
The wind rises, shakes leaves, dislodging one fruit,
Thudding on the roof, bouncing twice,
Rolling audibly…one, two more follow.
The house folds his hands, sitting silently for a while.
Everything is slowing down, floating brushwood.
The clock is ticking but not on the wall. Time machine
Oscillating to a gradually disappearing frequency,
I listen for the pop of ratchet and spring pulling the hammer backward
To strike the bell once, twice, then push off, sleep pulling at the oars.
Originally published in aaduna, Volume V, Issue 1 (Spring 2015)