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So Many Different Lengths Of Time

Rating: 4.5

How long does a man live after all?
A thousand days or only one?
One week or a few centuries?
How long does a man spend living or dying
and what do we mean when we say gone forever?

Adrift in such preoccupations, we seek clarification.
We can go to the philosophers
but they will weary of our questions.
We can go to the priests and rabbis

but they might be busy with administrations.
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Monday, March 9, 2015
Topic(s) of this poem: funeral
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COMMENTS OF THE POEM
Stephanie 21 October 2020

As Ian, looked up from recommendation by David Haig. Same comments. I find elegiac poems as

1 0 Reply
Ian Metherell 20 October 2020

Recommended by David Haig in The Times. Thank you, Brian, and David. Would a feminine version simply replace 'man' with 'woman'?

1 0 Reply
Chris Gwilliam 11 June 2019

Read by Brian Patten at the memorial service for his friend the poet Adrian Henri a beautiful poem

1 0 Reply
Robert Owen 23 June 2018

As well as for Ken Dodd it was used at the funeral (yesterday) of my Uncle David Roderick Hall. Not a dry eye in the chapel of rest.

1 0 Reply
Ross Smith 28 March 2018

A poignant reminder of our life and the passing years Heard it today during Sir Ken Dodds` funeral service at Liverpool Cathedral

1 0 Reply
Tom Allport 30 July 2017

a wonderful poem that like a piece of string a man will not need to know the lengths to go? .......well written Brian.

2 1 Reply

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