The Clepsydra By Dan Campion

The Clepsydra

The sundial, water clock, and hourglass
agree on time, but time conceals its hand;
one trusts the sun, another, sea, to pass
its strait. The third depends on grains of sand.
To measure time itself, a cheap watchband
does quite as well as any timepiece made,
just on a different scale. Time will expand
or shrink to any length to win your trade.
What gauges time is time: we watch it fade,
it watches us. This isn’t quite a sport,
although it feels like childhood games we played.
It’s more like hobbies of the rarer sort.
Revive the clepsydra. Raise up Stonehenge,
where time from timelessness exacts revenge.

Dan Campion is the author of Peter De Vries and Surrealism and co-editor of Walt Whitman: The Measure of His Song, a third edition of which was issued in 2019. Dan’s poetry has appeared in Poetry, Rolling Stone, and many other magazines. A selection of his poems titled The Mirror Test will be published by MadHat Press in February 2022.

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