across oceans she flew, a special clock hung around her neck like a noose rooted to her rich land by blood. with no consent it bleeps daily reminders to reach milestones she fears in nightmares - one is numbered 25. ancestors chant commands (from unwritten books): it's time -- the clock has struck 26 she is running now. no one but everyone chases her. in this race, girls run faster than boys for there is no shame greater than a woman unmedaled. afraid, she is running out of years. her clan weeps begs prays soothsayers cry prophecies of failure. words and tears are wasted minutes seconds away from public dishonor disaster. 26 howls the clock she runs 27 in circles caged by sacred time and fear, alarmed forever by the cultural parasite. . . . where people are raised with ticking clocks, there is a time and age for everything even love, sex and happiness.