With the smirk of a soulless sociopath, the metronome spreads vicious libels against the sanity of protoplasmic cadences.
*
The metronome is a jealous god. Its binary language of tick and tock aspires to eloquent command. Other oscillators make no such pretense to authority. Windshield wipers would consider you a feckless fool for paying the least bit of attention to them. The clock pendulum clacks and scolds, Don’t listen to me, don’t look at me! Look at the face, look at the hands!
*
The metronome would have you believe the world is uninhabitable—Arctic and Antarctic Poles pinioning a globe of vacant seas and sterile wastelands. But poles are there to be conquered; worlds are here to be lived.
*
The metronome is a salesman always closing, garrulously thrusting paperwork at you marked with checks and highlights showing where to sign and initial in triplicate, and you’ve made the deal before you know it, and you don’t have time to breathe until you’re finished, and you’ve got no idea what you bought or what it cost.
*
“Without Contraries is no progression.” The metronome is the boot-lick ass-wipe stooge-tool lackey of the bourgeois status quo denying opposites and movement. Every beat is alike, it tells us; moments between beats mean nothing. Pay no heed to such reactionary sophistries. Each moment is an era seized between horned dilemmas, an empire to be vaporized by a thunderclap of history.
*
Ah, you lovers—have nothing to do with this machine. What need have you for some technocratic busybody to synchronize your souls? You are two melodies in separate scores, polyrhythmic and cacophonic clusters when played simultaneously under the glare of a bare light bulb or the glow of a middling yellow star, but that nevertheless harmonize sweetly in the dark.

Image credit:51% Studios Architecture

Wim Coleman is a playwright, poet, novelist, and nonfiction writer. His poetry has been published in The Opiate, Dissenting Voice, Tuck Magazine, Vita Brevis, The Esthetic Apostle, Dream Noir, Visitant, The Thieving Magpie, Levee Magazine, and other publications. His book of poetry I.O.U. will be published this year by Adelaide Books. His play The Shackles of Liberty was the winner of the 2016 Southern Playwrights Competition. Novels that he has co-authored with his wife, Pat Perrin, include Anna’s World, the Silver Medalist in the 2008 Moonbeam Awards, and The Jamais Vu Papers, a 2011 finalist for the Eric Hoffer/Montaigne Medal. Wim and Pat lived for fourteen years in Mexico, where they adopted their daughter, Monserrat, and created and administered a scholarship program for at-risk students. Wim and Pat now live in Carrboro, North Carolina. They are members of PEN International. Blog: playsonideas.com.