“The Old Clock On The Stairs” By Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

I am, as those of you who follow this blog will know, interested in clocks and what they represent (I.E. Old Father Time himself, with his sickle chopping up seconds).

Yesterday I happened across Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s “The Old Clock On The Stairs” (https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/44643/the-old-clock-on-the-stairs). In his poem Longfellow describes a clock that ticks away in a mansion. Time passes never to return and the people observed by this timepiece are now dead or gone elsewhere leaving the clock telling time in the empty house.

My own work contains several poems which deal with the passing of time, including one simply entitled “Time” which runs thus:

“The reaper moves

In time with the pendulum.

No rush

Or fuss

He has plenty of time.

My patient friend

whose tick portends

my inevitable end.

You rest in state

on my bookcase.

Tick tock

I can not stop

time’s sithe.

None can survive

his cut.

Though in a cupboard my clock be shut

death can not be put


The sickle chops

And the heart will, one day, stop”.
(“Time” can be found in “Lost in the Labyrinth Of My Mind”, which is available from Moyhill Publishing (http://moyhill.com/lost/) and Amazon (https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01AF5EPVY).

My latest collection of poetry, “My Old Clock I Wind” is also available from Moyhill Publishing and can be found here (http://moyhill.com/clock/). “My Old Clock” can also be downloaded in the Amazon Kindle store (https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B0735JBVBG).

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