keeping the clock wound.

Lewis Carroll (Alice in Wonderland) was a storyteller, an artist, as well as a mathematician, and artists often have a more profound sense of what time is all about than do the scientists. There's a story of a small village (about the size of the village near Crosswicks) where lived an old clockmaker and repairer. When anything was wrong with any of the clocks or watches in the village, he was able to fix them, to get them working properly again. When he died, leaving no children and no apprentice, there was no one left in the village who could fix clocks. Soon various clocks and watches began to break down. Those which continued to run often lost or gained time, so they were of little use. a clock might strike midnight at three in the afternoon. So many of the villagers abandoned their timepieces.One day a renowned clockmaker and repairer came through the village, and the people crowded around him and begged him to fix their broken clocks and watches. He spent many hours looking at all the faulty timepieces, and at last he announced that he could repair only those whose owners had kept them wound, because they were the only ones which would be able to remember how to keep time. So we must daily keep things wound: that is, we must pray when prayer seems dry as dust; we must write when we are physically tired, when our hearts are heavy, when our bodies are in pain.

We may not always be able to make our "clock" run correctly, but at least we can keep it wound so that it will not forget.

- Madeleine L'Engle