There is a clock sitting on the shelf near our bed. It belonged to my mom’s dad and was passed on to me, making it my grandfather’s clock. Over a hundred years old, this timepiece is relatively small, meant to be set on a fireplace mantle, but it has a surprisingly vibrant chime. There are no batteries within, its mechanism driven by a coiled brass spring, which I wind weekly with a dozen turns of a key. For this effort, I am rewarded with a melodious chime counting out each and every hour.
I take comfort from these chimes, from the tick-tock of the ever swinging pendulum, an aroused awareness that time is now. I wonder if my grandfather, my mother, other family members, felt a similar connection.
I’ve lived more than 600,000 hours so far, a surprising number when I attempt to remember the breadth of my life experience. what happened to all those hours? The more important question, what will I do with the hours I have left?
Each tick of that clock is a moment I will never have again.
How many more chimes are left in my life?
How blessed I am to have had so many hours of being.
As my wife sleeps peacefully beside me, I again find comfort in the tick-tock of time, past, present, and future, and I drift away in hopes of hearing the morning chimes once more.
There’s an old folk song that beautifully expresses my sentiments, perfectly named, “My Grandfather’s Clock.” Here’s a link to a Johnny cash rendition
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We also have a mantle clock about the same age. No chime though. I also enjoy the tick-tock and the winding ritual and try to imagine how the world was when it was wound the first time.
Yes, I find the sound of wind up clocks, the movement of clock hands, a reminder that time keeps moving but life has its limits. thanks for stopping by.
Treasuring the time we have left and together is one of the great natural emotional resources and you are a wise man to grasp that so thoroughly.
thank you. With age has come a deeper awareness of life’s limits and a greater appreciation of the moment.