The Clockmaker

by Irene Sieders

My father was a lunatic master clockmaker. He made sure that each clock, large or small, antique or contemporary, ran at the exact time and not half a minute later than any of the others so lovingly restored. On the half hour and on the hour they all chimed simultaneously in a cacophony of joyful mad noise, only to fall silent again just as suddenly, to be replaced by the multiple tick tock of the many hands that crawled across the numerous faces. One morning he went quite mad, as if he had been struck by the clapper of a large bell that hung in a church tower, and between the hours of 5 and 5:30 AM he murdered my mother while she laid asleep in her bed. Afterward, he smoked a cigarette and listened to the crazy noise of all the clocks chiming the word guilty at him, before he picked up the telephone and called the police to turn himself in. On the question of why he had done it, he answered that she'd spent too much of his hard-earned cash on clothes and accessories.

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Irene Sieders is a coffee-drinking, cigarette-smoking Dutch woman who prefers to write in English. She's a rampaging socialist and a card-carrying agnostic. Her website is here.