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a rondel

It’s funny how a day can go so slow,
and yet a year just simply seems to fly.
We blink, and then another one goes by.
Those winds of change don’t ever cease to blow.

Time’s raging river has an undertow.
So quickly does our hourglass run dry.
It’s funny how a day can go so slow,
and yet a year just simply seems to fly.

I check my watch. Where do the minutes go?
They travel in the blinking of an eye.
Too soon, the time to leave this life draws nigh.
Though years fly by with such a manic flow,
it’s funny how a day can go so slow.

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Dave D. Irby is a retired law enforcement officer and a U.S. Air Force veteran, currently living in Halifax, VA.


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18 Responses

  1. Michael Dashiell

    You show time is tricky. For instance, today, this Wednesday, it seems is everyday. I’ve also noticed that when I write and concentrate, time seems to vanish or lose its presence. How about you, Dave?

    Reply
      • C.B. Anderson

        Which is to say, David, that it often takes a long time to write a good poem. Yours is a tight little gem that brings home a point that most of us have noticed, but few have articulated well. I think the years fly because each new year is a smaller proportion of the total of years. Why minutes drag is harder to understand, but there are three things especially that cause them to do so: pain, boredom & waiting for something.

    • Peter Hartley

      It is true that time flies when you are having a good time and it drags when you are doing time in gaol. I balked at first at the repeated use of “slow” as an adverb in the refrain, but then time flew by at a rate of knots as I ruminated over the fact that we don’t say “fastly” (although Shakespeare did, but he meant something else). A pleasant little rondel, it is a sharp reminder of man’s mortality.

      Reply
  2. Norma Okun

    David, I really enjoyed your sense of time. We cannot wait to grow old and when we are we wished we were young. Time is funny, it can heal, it can make you wait for the things you might just never get.

    Reply
  3. Paul Freeman

    A melancholy topic (if you’re at the blunt end of the time scale), wonderfully well written.

    As Einstein put it: “When you sit with a nice girl for two hours, you think it’s only a minute, but when you sit on a hot stove for a minute, you think it’s two hours. That’s relativity.”

    Thanks for the reads, David.

    Reply
  4. Paul Freeman

    Of course I’m saying ‘reads’ because I’ve read the poem twice.

    Reply
  5. David Paul Behrens

    Does time really exist or is it merely a concept invented by humans? This subject is so deep, I don’t have time to delve into it right now! I like this poem, and I know what you are talking about.

    Reply
    • C.B. Anderson

      No one really knows the answer to that. The nature of time is still an open philosophical question, though my alarm clock might disagree.

      Reply
  6. Jeff Eardley

    David, my father always used to say “If I knew that I would get this old, I would have looked after myself better” which always puzzled me. This is a lovely poem on one of the great dilemmas of all time. English folk singer, Sandy Denny, summed it up with her great song, “Who knows where the time goes.” which is worth searching for….if you have the time.
    Thank you for a good read.

    Reply
  7. Cynthia Erlandson

    Time is one of my favorite topics, and I think your rondel is lovely.

    Reply
  8. Yael

    Great poem, I love it. Especially the line “Time’s raging river has an undertow”, that’s a gem, thank you, I can really relate to this.

    Reply
  9. Cheryl Corey

    I especially love the first two stanzas. So true … so philosophical.

    Reply
  10. Martin Rizley

    Sobering, thoughtful, and very well crafted. This poem well illustrates how an idea can be powerfully conveyed through simplicity of expression, an economy of words and repetition.

    Reply
  11. Patricia Redfern

    David, I enjoyed your thinking and verses,
    So much so, passed it on to friends, famikt and others Peter’s!

    Reply

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