Archives for posts with tag: time

It’s Late
by Mary McCarthy

And I am still waiting

           for my scars to heal

Waiting to find the days

           the lightnings burned away

Waiting for the words I couldn’t say

           loud enough to reach you

Waiting to get past the ache

           of your absence

           raw as the socket

           of a pulled tooth

Waiting to outlive my reputation

Waiting for the chance

           of one more resurrection

           one more spin

           across this tilting floor

Waiting like the dancing god

           with one foot raised

           between memory and anticipation

Ready to grow

           bright as the sun

           at the horizon’s lip

Ready for that

           last flash of joy

           That will leave behind

           no more than a shimmer

           of fractured light

PAINTING: Girl with Lantern by Nikolay Bogdanov-Belsky (1908).

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: The topic of what we are waiting for seemed particularly compelling for me in terms of our situation with the pandemic, where we are waiting for it to end, for the possibility of some return to “normal,” and for my own situation, having had Covid and also just passed my 71st birthday. All of this left me with a sense of the pressure of time, that it is never guaranteed, not in years or days, or in terms of waiting for anyone to finish their plans, their work, their healing, or their struggle. In fact, we will all be surprised by our end, whenever it comes, and however, it won’t wait until we’re ready, so the challenge is to be ready now.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Mary McCarthy is a retired RN glad to find time for indulging her life long love of words and art. Her work has appeared in many journals and anthologies, most lately in the anthology The Ekphrastic World edited by Lorette Luzajic, and the anthology The Plague Papers, edited by Robbi Nester, as well as in the latest issues of Earth’s Daughters and Verse-Virtual.

Boys! Build Your Own Time Machine!
by Oz Hardwick

time machine oz hardwick

IMAGE: Untitled (Bird, Tree & Mountain) by Jagdish Swaminathan (1984).

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: When I think of my childhood, I think of the smell of wood: the timber yard a few streets away that I’d explore while Dad bought whatever it was he needed for something around the house; the school floorboards that were polished like treacle under glass; the wet tree stumps in the park where my grandfather would collect leaf mould for his prize-winning flowers; pews in the new church; and burning wood in the open hearth. During the past year, with so much less traffic, the world has smelled different, and sometimes a scent will trip me down a wormhole into another time.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Oz Hardwick is a European poet, photographer, and self-deluding musician, whose work has been published and performed internationally. His chapbook Learning to Have Lost (Canberra: IPSI, 2018) won the 2019 Rubery International Book Award for poetry, and his most recent publication is the prose poetry sequence Wolf Planet (Clevedon: Hedgehog, 2020). He has also edited or co-edited several anthologies, including The Valley Press Anthology of Prose Poetry (Scarborough: Valley Press, 2019) with Anne Caldwell. Oz is Professor of English at Leeds Trinity University, where he leads the postgraduate Creative Writing programmes. Visit him at

Lost-n-found: A watch
By Sunil Sharma

Lost-n-found has got its
Own charm. Like a Bollywood flick, its own appeal and logic.
A kid brother first lost in a carnival — and then found as an adult. That is
Life — -plain boring; for some, a bit dramatic and strange.
This watch!
Gifted by a friend, when I was turning gray on temples, not in mind.
It was a small memento of a love hardly found these days
In a culture on a transactional mode.
Lost it one morning and searched in every nook and corner
Of my suburban Mumbai apartment but, as happens in such situations,
You fail to see the old specs on your nose, while raising hell on a Sunday humid morn!
So, dear readers, it happened, I searched every corner, cleaning the cobwebs
Here-there and cursing.
No watch! Whenever I met my friend, I would cover
My wrists with sleeves on hot days but
The good ol’friend won’t mind the charade.
Then, last month, cleaning the innards of the crowded cupboard, I found the watch –sitting there pretty in a box, amid other objects, a box daily seen, yet unseen!
And I shouted Eureka!
And uncovered my wrists
Again in the remainder days of the coastal summer
For my delighted office friend.

IMAGE: Drawing of astronomical clock by Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519).

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: This poem celebrates the joys and pain of losing and recovering little objects that constitute our mundane world.


Mumbai-based, Sunil Sharma writes prose and poetry, apart from doing literary journalism and freelancing. A senior academic, he has been published in some of the leading international journals and anthologies. Sunil has published three collections of poetry, one collection of short fiction, and one novel and has co-edited five books of poetry, short fiction, and literary criticism. He is the recipient of the UK-based Destiny Poets’ inaugural Poet of the Year award, 2012.  Another notable achievement is that his select poems were published in the prestigious UN project  Happiness: The Delight-Tree (2015). He edits English section of the monthly Setu, a bilingual journal from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

by Jocelyn Mosman

The clock strikes midnight;
sunrise marks a new day:
a new attempt to make the world right,
another morning to waste away.

The clock strikes noon;
the sun reaches its lofty climax:
aged wisdom approaches too soon,
another afternoon heat does tax.

The clock strikes nine;
the sun sets on hazy skies:
age wrinkles the face of time,
guilt jabs with angry lies.

The clock strikes midnight, I confessed,
as two days, old and new, are laid to rest.

IMAGE: “Japanese Bridge and Water Lillies” by Claude Monet (1899). Clock available at


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Jocelyn Mosman is a student at Mount Holyoke College, majoring in English and Politics. She is an active member of the Northampton Poetry group, the Poetry Society of Texas, and the founder of the West Texas Poets. She has been published in various anthologies and magazines, including Drunk Monkeys, Decanto, and Cum Laude Weekly. She has also published her own poetry book, Soul Music, and her second book, Soul Painting, arrived on July 1, 2014.

Author photo by Nadine’s Photography.

by Subhankar Das

May came quietly
or quite early this year.
My young friend
who gifted me an art calendar
must also have thought that too.
I put it up on the wall
in front of my desk
and suddenly realized
4 months of my life just vanished
doing nothing.

As if I would have
moved a mountain
if I knew.

IMAGE: 2014 Claude Monet Calendar, available at


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Subhankar Das is a poet, film producer, bookstore owner, and publisher of Bangla experimental material. He produced six short films that have been honored at international film festivals, and has translated the works Allen Ginsberg and Charles Bukowski into Bangla.

by Sasha Dugdale

Every morning since the time changed
I have woken to the dawn chorus
And even before it sounded, I dreamed of it
Loud, unbelievably loud, shameless, raucous

And once I rose and twitched the curtains apart
Expecting the birds to be pressing in fright
Against the pane like passengers
But the garden was empty and it was night

Not a slither of light at the horizon
Still the birds were bawling through the mists
Terrible, invisible
A million small evangelists

How they sing: as if each had pecked up a smoldering coal
Their throats singed and swollen with song
In dissonance as befits the dark world
Where only travelers and the sleepless belong

 SOURCE: Poetry (May 2011)

IMAGE: “Moonbirds,” drawing by J. Ferwerda. Prints available at


 ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Poet, playwright, and translator Sasha Dugdale was born in Sussex, England. She has worked as a consultant for theater companies in addition to writing her own plays. From 1995 to 2000, she worked for the British Council in Russia. She is author of the poetry collections The Estate (2007), Notebook (2003), and Red House (2011) and has translated Russian poetry and drama, including Anton Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard.

by Jim Harrison

Back in the blue chair in front of the green studio

another year has passed, or so they say, but calendars lie.

They’re a kind of cosmic business machine like

their cousin clocks but break down at inopportune times.

Fifty years ago I learned to jump off the calendar

but I kept getting drawn back on for reasons

of greed and my imperishable stupidity.

Of late I’ve escaped those fatal squares

with their razor-sharp numbers for longer and longer.

I had to become the moving water I already am,

falling back into the human shape in order

not to frighten my children, grandchildren, dogs and friends.

Our old cat doesn’t care. He laps the water where my face used to be.
“Calendars” appears iin Jim Harrison’s collection In Search of Small Gods (Copper Canyon Press, 2006), available at

PHOTO: “Cat in birdbath” by Jim Vansant. Prints available at

by Stephen Dunn

It was the hour of simply nothing,

not a single desire in my western heart,

and no ancient system

of breathing and postures,

no big idea justifying what I felt.

There was even an absence of despair.


“Anything goes,” I said to myself.

All the clocks were high. Above them,

hundreds of stars flickering if, if, if.

Everywhere in the universe, it seemed,

some next thing was gathering itself.

I started to feel something,
but it was nothing more than a moment

passing into another, or was it less

eloquent than that, purely muscular,

some meaningless twitch?

I’d let someone else make it rhyme.

STEPHEN DUNN (born 1939) has written fifteen collections of poetry, including Different Hours (where “Zero Hour” appears), winner of the 2001 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry. A recipient of the Academy Award in Literature fro the American Academy of Arts and Letters, he has also received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, Guggenheim Foundation, and Rockefeller Foundation.

Photo: “Cloud Water Circle” by Gail Walks Across, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED


“Morning brings back the heroic ages. There was something cosmical about it; a standing advertisement, till forbidden, of the everlasting vigor and fertility of the world. The morning, which is the most memorable season of the day, is the awakening hour. Then there is least somnolence in us; and for an hour, at least, some part of us awakes which slumbers all the rest of the day and night.”  From Walden, Or Life in the Woods by HENRY DAVID THOREAU

Photo: “Walden Pond, Beautiful Day” by machris, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED