Poem introduction

These new recordings have been commissioned by Pendle Radicals, in partnership with the Finding Ethel project, and made possible by the National Lottery Heritage Fund. Pendle Radicals is a part of the Pendle Hill Landscape Partnership.

Meadow Clock

Meadow Clock, Meadow Clock, what time o’t’ day?

Childhood time, wild-wood time - laughter and play.

Meadow Clock, Meadow Clock is there time still

To go by the brooklets way, home by the mill?


Yes there is time. Journey slow, very slow,

For the days will fly faster the further you go,

Faster, yet slower, when dull care shall knock,

And no time for blowing the old meadow clock.


Work, and the world, and the jostling hours,

Dreams but for birds, and the leaves, and the flowers.

Tears for your eyes when you hear children say,

Meadow Clock, Meadow Clock, what time o’t’ day?

from Wheatsheaf 1931, © Ethel Carnie Holdsworth 1932, used by permission of the copyright holder Helen Brown.

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Books by Ethel Carnie Holdsworth