Bar Time: A Poetic Interlude …

In keeping with universal saloon practice,
the clock here is set fifteen minutes ahead
of all the clocks in the outside world.
This makes us a rather advanced group,
doing our drinking in the unknown future,
immune from the cares of the present,
safely harbored a quarter of an hour
beyond the woes of the contemporary scene.
No wonder such thoughtless pleasure derives
from tending the small fire of a cigarette,
from observing this glass of whiskey and ice,
the cold rust I am sipping,
or from having an eye on the street outside
when Ordinary Time slouches past in a topcoat,
rain running off the brim of his hat,
the late edition like a flag in his pocket.

— Billy Collins.

Ludes, past:

Marianne Moore, 1.
Theodore Roethke, 1, 2, 3.
Richard Wilbur, 1.

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