Created in a factory in France
For the Russian market
You were shipped to Bessarabia
Where Bubbas and Zeders admired
Your shiny brass, your wall of glass
Your spinning cogwheels
And your French cachet.
You marked their days and weeks
The lighting of the samovar
Kindling of Sabbath candles.
When Abraham journeyed to a distant land
You traveled with him
Took your place on a Whitechapel mantel.
Your tick tock lulled the births
Of Mark, David, Annie, Isaaac, Phil,
And little Minnie,
Told the times for shul and bar mitzvah.
You showed the midnight hour
When Phil eloped
With sweet sixteen Polish Perel.
Like many an immigrant
You moved on to the suburbs
And when at last the patriarch closed his eyes
And sons in sequence chose a keepsake--
One the silver samovar
Another the Sabbath candlesticks--
You were left to Philip
A permanent reminder of his junior status.
Abraham, Isaac, Grandpa
Have passed away long since,
You still keep perfect time
On an Ipswich dresser
Marking days and weeks
As you always did.
One day your hands will spin back seven hours
And Sabbath lights will sparkle on your brass
In Turtle Island.