Alarm Clock

My daughter is a senior in high school. Next month, she and I are visiting the college she plans to attend. Adulthood is closing in fast. Before long, the days of having “my little girl” at home will be past. I’ve hardly begun to accept this fact.

Thinking about my daughter growing up reminded me of a poem called “Alarm Clock” I wrote eight or nine years ago. This poem was in my first book, The Wind and the Shadows, and looks at the transition from little kid to older child, the horizon of adulthood looming in the background.

Alarm Clock

My daughter’s face lights up
as we plug it in
and set the time:
her first alarm clock.

That night,
I make sure the alarm is set
and flip off the light.

The clock’s face glows
as I kiss my daughter goodnight.

At the bedroom door, I pause
to look back.
The clock casts new shadows
over my daughter’s bedspread,
which is pink with cartoon ponies.

I remember
she used to pop up early,
chattering and scampering
like a chipmunk.
No one needed alarm clocks
in those days.

Later that night,
I sit down on my bed.

For a long while
I look at my alarm clock.

my hand lifts up
and moves the switch.

The alarm is set.

I lie down to sleep,
and sleep I will

my dreams are cut short
and I turn off
the alarm.

Published by mrteague

Teague McKamey lives in Washington state with his wife and two children. Teague’s poetry has appeared in several journals and in self-published books. He blogs at and In all areas of life, Teague desires that Christ may be magnified in his body (Php. 1:20).

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