The second hand is waiting
To make its move;
The other players, hesitating,
Hold their turns in time’s groove.
The hour has missed its cue,
Or else its fellow connivers have shifted
Their bets on what the moon and stars are due
From this day’s dupe
Whose cards they’ve marked and sifted.
No help from partners: unlit dials
Are faces — unreadable — of opponents’
Weights, counterparts, and components
That spread in rictuses instead of smiles.
The Sun tilts back; Earth balances on its chair;
The watches watch; the Zodiac turns and stares;
“Eternity can’t wait forever,” grumbling
Night’s slumped disgruntled in the air;
And still I sit expectant, fumbling, fumbling.