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Dear Lord of 11:11
Betsy Mars


"If it's 11:11, make a wish! Some people believe 11:11 is a magic number or lucky time of day,
good for making a wish ... or reaching cosmic enlightenment"

You arrive twice a day and how many wishes
can I make, can you fulfill, in one-minute rifts?
I race as the seconds tick down to impotent 12.
World peace? A new hip? Self-cleaning grout?
Is it too big a request? Too general? Too mundane? Too selfish?
What's worthy of this rare instance when I pay attention,
notice the sacred moment when the doors of clock heaven open?
I rummage to find what you might heed in those precious 60 seconds—
inundated with a zillion voices in myriad languages,
besieging you with pleas before the gates of wishdom slam closed.
Are You a genie stoppered in a dusty lamp? In all humility,
I beg you in your un-infinite powers: accede to my whim,
grant me more time, oh Lord of the Second Hand,
please read my mind.

© by Betsy Mars.
Used with the author's permission.


Betsy Mars is a prize-winning poet, photographer, and editor (Gyroscope Review) who lives in the suburbs of Southern California. She works as a substitute teacher which, she says, gives her some hope for the future of humankind. When she really needs to be reminded that the world is a wonderful place, though, she turns to animals and nature. Betsy is the author of Alinea and In the Muddle of the Night, which was co-authored with Alan Walowitz. She recently collaborated with artist Judith Christensen on an installation which is part of an ongoing exploration of memory, identity, home, and family. Learn more about Betsy at


Post New Comment:
I just wanted to thank everyone for the kind comments. I really appreciate them so much.
Posted 08/02/2023 10:53 PM
"the gates of wishdom" - what a terrific phrase! I greatly enjoyed reading this poem, Betsy!
Posted 07/30/2023 08:28 PM
Lori Levy:
Great! Very creative.
Posted 07/30/2023 05:51 PM
Love this!!
Posted 07/30/2023 03:38 PM
Very expressive, thought-provoking piece
Posted 07/30/2023 03:16 PM
Oh, I love this poem! Id never heard of 11:11, so thank you for pointing to this place and time of wishdom these 60 seconds in which to do some quick wishing. Oh, Lord, of the Second Hand. So delightful!
Posted 07/30/2023 12:31 PM
Brava Betsy!
Posted 07/30/2023 11:53 AM
Jane H Fitzgerald:
Great, we all need to stop.
Posted 07/30/2023 11:44 AM
Sharon Waller Knutson:
I was happy to wake up laughing to a Betsy Mars poem. I loved this delightful charming poem. It is so Betsy. Unique, creative and quirky. Favorite line: World peace? A new hip? Self-cleaning grout?
Posted 07/30/2023 11:12 AM
Wonderful poem. Gates of wishdom...
Posted 07/30/2023 10:59 AM
Lord of the Second Hand. Excellent!
Posted 07/30/2023 09:38 AM
When I want an example of original writing, I will cite this poem. Well done, Betsy.
Posted 07/30/2023 09:24 AM
Angela Hoffman:
Oh Betsy, I love this poem!
Posted 07/30/2023 09:01 AM
I love the notion of clock heaven. Now Ill pay closer attention to that magic time and be ready with my wish!
Posted 07/30/2023 07:41 AM
INteresting, Betsy! Great poem! I have to admit, I did not know that 11:11 was good luck. I always associate it with the artificial elongating of WWI
Posted 07/30/2023 07:05 AM

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