At some point during the eleventh hour
I remembered that fact about bamboo,
how it grows as fast as a minute hand moves.

Rolling over I watched the clock
across the room until my eyes watered.

For a second I swore I could see it,
the long arrow inching along,
but it might’ve been an illusion.

At some point I fetched a glass of ice,
hoping the coolness would soothe my throat.

It worsened my migraine instead
so I left it on my bedside, watched
as the cubes collapsed

in on themselves. This I could see,
just about, in real time.

Unlike my plants, which were dying
imperceptibly, a continent away
on my windowsill.

Pulling the covers over my head
I tried to drown out the sound of ticking.

In the morning I sat up,
reached for the glass,
downed its lukewarm contents.