Count Down



take my six hours, we’ll call it a day

I’d like to leap a different way

a quarter to keep for myself

a fraction of time that is mine

all just mine

borrowed time there on the shelf

I’d rise at first stroke

spend my two bits till I’m broke

a revolution, in minutes, all mine

no time to do aught but eat and clear up

is this how I’d spend that brief time

breakfast at twelve, elevenses at one

lunchtime I’d have about two

afternoon tea at the a.m. of three

and dinner at four, that would do

I’d supper at five, that would be a surprise

and at six I’d depart for the night

one hour to rest then up on my feet

to begin a new day, sleepless fright

but oh, what a waste, to be eating in haste

and spend all night washing up

I could do better if I saved time till later

some minutes to give it more thought


how about this for alternative bliss

save all my quarters for years

a decade or three, a whole week for free

to choose when I want with no fears

folk would be working, couldn’t accuse me of shirking

’cause I had my time in the bag

could swanny around with my feet off the ground

flying without the jet lag

I’d meet other folk who had theirs and we’d joke

about using up time of our own

frugally friends meeting now and again

who could buy several days without loan

right about now I’d have two weeks to spare

time saved for the chance to be anywhere

Leap Fortnight I’d call it and smile

I’ll be gone for a while, checking leap watch’s dial

standing time on its head way out there


‘Do you know what you’re going to do with it yet?’

I smile and check my leap watch again.

‘Two weeks! Wow! I spent mine on one.’

‘What did you do with yours?’

‘Lazed around, mainly. Got to the point I didn’t know which day it was let alone what time.’

‘Kinda the way I want mine to be. But I don’t want to waste it either.’

‘Have you made any plans at all?’

‘One or two…’

And I said nothing else. How to explain the different me that I would be with two weeks I’d saved for fifty-two years.

‘I’ve booked a flight…’

‘Ooh, where? Can you say?’

‘Somewhere where time stands still…well, slows down….’

‘But that can only be….’

‘Shh! No one else knows yet.’

‘I’ll miss you.’

‘No, you won’t. I’ll still be back in two of your weeks, with seconds to spare.’