I remember a spiral staircase. I climbed it four days a fortnight for 13 years. Sometimes I mounted it in the dark, for it had no light. My feet knew the way. Winter and summer. At the top of the stair is the mechanism of a clock. It had weights controlling its mechanism, its quarter chimes, and the bell which counted each hour, day and night. I wound that clock with a great key which needed both hands and arms to turn it. People who had lived nearby for years found it a great comfort.
Outside, on the church tower wall the clock face was painted blue and gold.
I thought of that clock tonight as I looked out at the harvest field, work at a standstill because of the rain. In the near distance the crop was old gold. Further on, where it had already been cut, the stubble was a light gold.. The evening sky was blue but with pastel grey clouds infused with red, from the sunset.
And I remembered the clock.
And winding it by hand for 13 years.
I don’t know whether it is still wound by hand but it is at St Mary at Finchley, London. You can find it on the web.