Sunday, November 6, 2011
Time changes, or does it?
Early last evening I went around changing clocks: watches, microwave, stove, table clock, alarm clock. I didn't change my electronics since those would change themselves. How is that? What big switch in the ether zaps all our computers with the correct (?) time at the given moment? Does time really go back or forward in one fell swoop?
I hate time change days. It is artificial. It was a plan devised for an agrarian society to aid in harvesting crops and planting seasons. I don't feel any different in the morning one way or another. I don't experience gaining or losing an hour of sleep. Of course that may be due to the fact that I don't sleep like most people, with a set bedtime or rising hour. I never have been that kind of a sleeper. I am fond of the long afternoon nap and the late night writing session. I am not an early "getter-upper" by any means.
Native culture does not operate on linear time. That is another "issue" for me. I don't see time as a "from here to there" thing at all. This view (circular and concurrent) makes it hard for me sometimes. It is hard to fit myself into a calendar world. I do well with it only because I force myself. Being "retired" is somewhat of a help in that I don't have to show up to a job on a specific day and at a specific time. I can ebb and flow. I like ebbing. I like flowing.
Having said that, certain dates are on my mind, like birthdays and holidays and special anniversary dates. Again, I think this is because I have fairly well assimilated to that kind of living. But I really FEEL time easing or gaining strength with the seasons. Imagine how hard it was for me living in the CA desert where the seasons were vague things, marked by subtle changes rather than first or last snow, leaves changing and falling, birds arriving or departing, trees falling asleep or waking. It was awful in many ways and I felt discombobulated most of the time. I am grateful for the seasons and my whole body feel more at peace with the natural world in charge.
I have a photo of myself (my feet) straddling the "time line" at Greenwich. It is one of my favorite photos of me: proof to me that I can be everywhere at once. Freaky and fun. I like crossing the International Date Line, the Continental Divide. I'd love to cross the Equator (minus the hazing rituals). Time. Place. Fascinating.
How does this play into my writing? It creates a volume of sensory experiences that figure heavily into topic and approach. I have written much more (and more successfully) since coming home to native ground where nature is active in my body and my psyche. I am attuned to temperature changes and weather and environs. I have more energy for writing here. I feel more free to express what I see, hear, and feel of my surroundings. I am in sync with my space and place. Ahhh, feels so good.
Robert Frost did not want to be known as a "nature poet" (or so it is rumored). I am happy if someone describes me thusly. Nature, place. That is my thing. But maybe a time poet too. I am interested in what happens when. I like to consider the changes that take place in people and places over the curve of the circle of time. I like to write about those changes.
So tell me, followers and readers, what about time in your life and in your writing??? And did you feel the falling back that supposedly happened in the middle of the "night" as proscribed by the Timekeeper?