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My Heart Is Not A Clock

·1142 words·6 mins·
Poem-Swap 2024
Jerry S
Jerry S
Table of Contents
If she looks familiar, read the mural section to learn more.

“Do you still love me?” is what you ask me
while you stare into my soul
“Do you even care about us anymore?”

I’m frozen by your request and I feel…
I play hide and seek with words I know I might never find

It’s hopeless, can’t be helped, my mechanism fails
I try desperately to love you but my heart
it just won’t start
This silence made of steel we’ve built
continues to prevail

My memories rewind themselves and I
sift through all their sand
I’m looking for that needle, the
one that spun round and round, it
glinted with a fervor, even through the
mental blocks

My shame, it bubbles up, threatening
yet agin with tears.
It dawns on me, that this entire
time I’ve been utterly unable to face
my fears.

What will you say? What will you do?
Will you leave me? Will I leave you?

I don’t want to make you cry so much
I’ve shared with you too much pain,
but we won’t get through this without more
squawking, not without more bouts of rain.

“I don’t know,” my go-to phrase when I
haven’t got a clue.
My heartbeats were for only you but
now they’ve changed their rhythm.

I rage against myself inside,
distress upon distress, my placid face
will shatter and my ego will finally
burst in flame.

Implorations from your eyes demand an
I close my own, reach to the void
of emptiness so vast.

“I could babble on forever about when I
think it happened. It doesn’t really
matter, even I don’t know that truth.
What matters is this love is gunked,
the gears froze up somewhere in our past.”

My mind still races and claws for
an answer to this question that
won’t quell
My psyche is self-obliterating, my
defenses blow up one by one.
My speech so far isn’t helping,
the right words, they’ll never come
It budges not, this impossibility,
but I give it all I have.

“I need to break up, for our own good,
please trust. I know it won’t
work right now. I still love you,
I still care, I swear. I just
have a tremendous doubt.”

“What will you do when you regret this?
When the doubt flies from your nest?
What if I’ve moved on?
Another dove in flight with me where you had been?”

“I’ll shed big globby drops and
depress myself into the ground, bury
my body in consequences I foresee will
abound. You won’t be there to soothe
me and I’ll have no other villain but
myself to blame.”

Our separate ways we take
An eternity, if lucky, till we next meet.

But your puzzle question remains
and it’s slaying all my might.
Each tactic I employ crumbles, it senses exactly
how I’ll fight.
I’ve screamed and howled my being raw,
how am I still alive?
There is nothing left of me, this battle
can’t be won.

One day I wake, the koan cracked
Tick tock, tick tock
My heart is not a clock
It can’t be wound, no cuckoo bird
to chirp
No pendulum to swing, no tick of time
to measure other than its own.

I’m sorry, Love, for all the suffering,
My prophecy foretold has came to pass.
I wish that I had known.

Why did it take so long?

Tick tock, tick tock
My heart is not a clock.

Inspiration Revealed

My muses inspire me when I write.

Your muses inspire you when you read.

Below I choose to disclose the inspirations and interpretations of my own poems.

Maybe our muses told us some of the same things. Read on below if you really want to find out.


I wrote this poem so long ago and it stall captures one of the greatest life lessons I’ve learned. Upon rereading it the inspiration is obviously a breakup and I hope it’s clear to you, reader, as well. There doesn’t seem to be a hidden message here, but be careful, the breakup is just a front, an unfortunate bystander.

It’s a breakup that I initiated. I’m not proud of it, I’m not ashamed of it. It happened as it had to happen because I had to reinvent a pain in myself that is a pain as old as humans are old. Maybe pain is not the right word. It’s maybe better to say doubt, like in the way Zen meditation is meant to create a great doubt for those that don’t already have their own doubts to bring to their meditation.

I created a doubt in myself and I became…stuck; I was stuck for a long time on the same doubt and question. This is the real inspiration.

Why did it take me so long to become unstuck? What was it? As I ask myself this question that doubt from before starts to creep up again and I feel it start spreading. This time I can dispel it faster than before but I have to be careful because the doubt can mutate.

Tick tock, tick tock, my heart is not a clock.

It’s not an excuse, exactly, and yet somehow it is.

I do not apologize for not being a green cat that hunts at night. Should I apologize for the rhythm of my heart? Maybe.

Maybe I can shift my own heart’s rhythm and learn to have it make different kinds of music. Yes, that would be lovely. Maybe I can make it beat more courage. I do have a varied taste in music after all.

The Mural

If anyone familiar with my life from many many years ago should come around and read this post, this mural might look familiar; more precisely, the person in the mural looks familiar.

It’s pure coincidence.

I spotted the mural in the town I live in right now and it served to remind me that I had not yet posted this very old poem I wrote many many years ago.

I suppose it was time.

Sense 8

I watched a show called Sense 8 but I don’t know if it was after I wrote this poem or before. Chances are really good that I watched Sense 8 before writing this. The exact timeline is not something I remember but the coincidence of Hernando’s words in Season 1 Episode 9 is too much. I must have used Hernando’s comment for inspiration. He reminds Lito of a line from a movie that Lito himself acted in:

My heart is not a clock.

– Hernando to Lito

I rewatched the Sense 8 episode when writing this out. I’m stealing these words from Hernando as well:

Tick tock, tick tock
My heart is not a clock
My apology, and also my anthem

– Jerry S