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Jerry Spinelli

“The Clock on the Morning Lenape Building

Must Clocks be circles?
Time is not a circle.
Suppose the Mother of All Minutes started
right here, on the sidewalk
in front of the Morning Lenape Building, and the parade
of minutes that followed--each of them, say, one inch long--
headed out that way, down Bridge Street.
Where would Now be? This minute?
Out past the moon?
Jupiter?
The nearest star?

Who came up with minutes, anyway?
Who needs them?
Name one good thing a minute's ever done.
They shorten fun and measure misery.
Get rid of them, I say.
Down with minutes!
And while you're at it--take hours
with you too. Don't get me started
on them.

Clocks--that's the problem.
Every clock is a nest of minutes and hours.
Clocks strap us into their shape.
Instead of heading for the nearest star, all we do
is corkscrew.
Clocks lock us into minutes, make Ferris wheel
riders of us all, lug us round and round
from number to number,
dice the time of our lives into tiny bits
until the bits are all we know
and the only question we care to ask is
"What time is it?"

As if minutes could tell.
As if Arnold could look up at this clock on
the Lenape Building and read:
15 Minutes till Found.
As if Charlie's time is not forever stuck
on Half Past Grace.
As if a swarm of stinging minutes waits for Betty Lou
to step outside.
As if love does not tell all the time the Huffelmeyers
need to know.”


Jerry Spinelli, Love, Stargirl
tags: clocks, time
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Love, Stargirl (Stargirl, #2) Love, Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli
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