Days began with sunrise, lasted till
sunset, as long as the solar pendulum.
Seasons, spring, summer, autumn, winter
one seamless continuum.
Sow with the first cuckoo, reap
the day after the first harvest moon.
Salt the surplus beasts for winter keep
when the oak strips naked in the wood.
Then someone felt the need to measure time,
to chop the year up into lunar phases,
subdivide the night with stellar gazes,
impose a rhythm, no reason or rhyme.
Whoever first invented clocks
put man in chains and time in a box.
If you've any comment on this poem, Anthony Cloke would be pleased to hear from you.