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On a Sundial by Hilaire Belloc
In soft deluding lies let fools delight.
A Shadow marks our days; which end in Night.
How slow the Shadow creeps: but when 'tis past
How fast the Shadows fall. How fast! How fast!
Loss, and Possession, Death and Life are one.
There falls no shadow where there shines no sun.
Stealthy the silent hours advance, and still;
And each may wound you, and the last shall kill.
Here in a lonely glade, forgotten, I
Mark the tremendous process of the sky.
So does your inmost soul, forgotten, mark
The Dawn, the Noon, the coming of the Dark.
I that still point to one enduring star
Abandoned am, as all the Constant are.
Save on the rare occasions when the Sun
Is shining, I am only here for fun.
I am a sundial, and I make a botch
Of what is done far better by a watch.
I am a sundial, turned the wrong way round.
I cost my foolish mistress fifty pound.
ON A SUNDIAL
Creep, shadow, creep: my ageing hours tell.
I cannot stop you, so you may as well.
I am a Sundial. Ordinary words
Cannot express my thoughts on Birds.