Life Time or The Space of an Hour

Two poems, written on the boat which takes an hour to go from Block Island to Point Judith, otherwise known here as “America”, and as it is December, the noise and chatter from many others present, seemed to be about “time”.   

Life Time     

IMG_2415

Old Harbor Block Island, ferry coming in on a calm day

Take time, find time, 
make time, no time.
as if time belonged
as if there was a thing
to be collected.
Gloop or granules, sand
quantity of stuff 
to own possess hold
let trickle
through feckless fingers
falling soft 
on the floor of a life.

Time is no thing
just a measure
of actions, happenings
the work done or not done
the quartz flicker 
of thought seen unseen
glittering falling 
softly  on waking
jolting awareness
here opens the door 
to a life.


A short history of Time: The space of an hour

Sundial at Beijing Astronomical Museum

Sundial at Beijing Astronomical Museum

The boat takes an hour
that measure of space
where noise and chatter 
clatters its voice. 
That time is the same 
from the east to the west
occident, orient,
an hour is in place
a bit of the day.
Where did it come from?
I understand day
it comes after the night,
but everyone everywhere 
anywhere said
the day is too long.
We need to divide and 
two lots of twelve will 
be best to decide.
So that little measure
an hour of your life 
From Beijing to Babylon
Atlantis to Arctic
is always the same.
And I want to know
How on earth did they know?
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