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clocks

By
July 15, 2013

What purpose would serve us
a clock?

if we wash the white clothes:
it is day

the dark clothes:
it is night

if you part with a knife an orange
in two:
day

if you open with your fingers a ripe
fig:
night

if we spill water:
day

if we overturn wine:
night

when we hear the toaster’s alarm
or the kettle like a small animal
that would try to sing:
day

when we open certain slow books
and maintain them alight
at the expense of alcohol, cigarettes, silence:
night

if we sweeten the tea:
day

if we don’t sweeten it:
night

if we sweep the house or wax it:
day

if on it we wipe damp cloths:
night

if we have migraines, eczemas, allergies:
day

if we have fever, cramps, swellings:
night

aspirins, X-rays, urine test:
day

bandages, compressions, ointments:
night

if I heat in bain-marie the honey that crystallized
or use lemons to clean the glass:
day

if after eating apples
I keep on a whim the dark purple paper:
night

if I beat the whites into snow:
day

if I cook large beets:
night

if we write with pencil on lined paper:
day

if we fold the sheets or crease them:
night

(expansions and peaks:
day
layers and folds:
night)

if you forget in the oven a yellow
cake:
day

if you leave the water to boil
alone:
night

if through the window the ocean is quiet
sluggish and greasy
like a puddle of oil:
day

if it is furious
foaming
like a rabid dog:
night

if a penguin reaches Ipanema
and laying itself on the hot sand senses its gelid heart
boiling:
day

if a whale runs aground during low tide
and dies heavy, dark,
as in an opera, singing:
night

if you unbutton slowly
your white blouse:
day

if we undress with anxiety
creating around us an ardent circle of cloths:
night

if a green brilliant beetle beats repetitively
against the glass:
day

if a round bee circles the room
disoriented by sex:
night

What purpose would serve us
a clock?

G

Author Image

Ana Martins Marques was born in Belo Horizonte in 1977. She has a degree in Literature from the Federal University of Minas Gerais and has a PhD in Comparative Literature from the same institution. She is the author of two poetry collections, A vida submarina (Scriptum, 2009) and Da arte das armadilhas (Companhia das Letras, 2011). She received the most important literary award from the Brazilian National Library for Da arte das armadilhas and was shortlisted for the Portugal Telecom Literary Award.

Elisa Wouk Almino is a freelance writer and translator living in Brooklyn. She received a BA in English at Barnard College and will be a graduate student at the Cultural Reporting & Criticism program at NYU this fall.

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