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by John Miles

Oh time, that subtle thief of youth,
Has scant regard for the eternal truth,
That eventually, will come the day,
When he, at last, will pass away.

Hurrying on through allotted span,
His mocking flight from finite man,
But God is your master, He alone,
Can your headlong rush postpone.

He has no pity on youth's fair show,
Cares nought for summers bounteous flow,
His patience long through autumn's haze,
His cold reward, is winter's grave.

His friends are few and far between,
Like Greenwich, and quartz and 'might-have-been.'
Diaries and deadlines, the 'morning call'.
'Last chance', and clocks, cruel tyrants all.

He marks each man's appointed hour,
To bloom, then fade, like summer's flower;
To wither as the sun-bleached blade,
Of grass, short-lived and doomed to fade.

So much would I achieve each day,
If time would cease his rush and stay;
I'd do good deeds, great mountains climb,
Enrich the world, if I only had time.

A rich man would give all his wealth,
For one more year, enjoyed in health,
What good his wealth? It will not save
That man one hour from the waiting grave.

Through Christ I can escape his pain;
Through Christ, the locust's fill regain,
Redeem the wasted years ill-spent;
Each moment now, a gift heaven-sent.

Each day's potential, who can tell?
Its trickle flows to eternal swell.
Eternal life's great flowing course,
Begins in time, its opening source.

O come the hour, that is the last!
When sun's last shadow o'er Earth is cast;
When cease the morn and daily chime;
And this tired Earth runs out of time.

This poem was a finalist in the July 2009 poetry contest

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