The Guilty Party

Monday, June 9, 2008

"O! call back yesterday, bid time return."

That's Shakespeare. Richard II, to be more precise.

Our subject today is time. Nothing can torment or seem to work against us more than time. Often we plead for it to return, and just as often we complain that it weighs heavily and why doesn't it speed itself along?

"Ah, those were the days. Life was good then."

"When is this day ever going to end?"

It is a strange and undeniably frustrating way to approach life. And yet we all do it. Some a lot more than others, but everyone has had those thoughts. Even Oprah. You can chant "Carpe diem" and "Bloom where you're planted." till the cows come home but those thoughts will creep in, bringing discontent and impatience.

As I was doing my exhaustive three minute research for this piece, I happened across a quotation from a certain Keith Douglas. Mr. Douglas lived from 1920 to 1944. A mere twenty-four years in which to live his life. I would tell you more about him and why he merits inclusion in the Oxford Dictionary of Quotations but I don't have time to find out myself. But I would like to share this from his On a Return from Egypt.

And all my endeavours are unlucky explorers
come back, abandoning the expedition:
the specimens, the lilies of ambition
still spring in the their climate, still unpicked:
but time, time is all I lacked
to find them, as the great collectors before me.

I don't know if we should be irritated at time, or the lilies of ambition. Or maybe we should just lighten up and enjoy. But give me time and I'll try to figure it out.

Go Ye Forth and Do Likewise.


Lexi said...

There's nothing wrong with my life that I couldn't straighten out, given a time machine.

Or a life span of two hundred years.

Or the ability to stop the world for a space, while I catch up with things.

I'm not depressing you at all, I hope?

plumboz said...

I've considered the time machine solution myself, but am convinced I would just muck things up differently, possibly leading to world destruction or a really bad credit rating.

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I am a writer with a longtime interest in photography. I'm a dad, husband, photographer, and not very good guitarist. My first novel, Boomerang, is available in both paperback and ebook form at Amazon, Barnes and Noble and As a matter of fact, my second novel, The Baer Boys, can be found at exactly the same places.