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Wish


I told him I needed time—
he gave me a cuckoo clock

(I couldn’t work the winding key)

I told him I needed space—
he gave me a telescope

(or make the moon look back at me)

I told him I needed change—
he gave me a penny jar

(or stop from spending every cent)

I told him I needed more—
he led me to the well

(or count up every wish I’d spent)

Now I have so much time,
the cuckoo’s flown away

(the moon’s a clock that’s come unwound)

Now I have so much space,
it’s night for days on end

(the moon’s a shadow on the ground)

Now I have so much change,
the well’s just one more wish

(the moon’s a coin the well has drowned)


Caitlin Doyle

The Yale Review

October 2017


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