The Clockmaker

While Jenni was pregnant with Lunch Bucket, I decided to write a collection of childrens stories to read to our kids.  This was one of the stories I wrote.  It’s a little long – but it was intended as a childrens book.  I just thought it would be fun to share here:

theclockmaker

The Clockmaker

Once upon a time there was a clockmaker. He could make large clocks, small clocks, blue clocks, green clocks, and just about any kind of clock you could think of. Whenever someone wanted a clock, they would come to the clockmaker’s shop, knock on the door, and say,

“Clockmaker, clockmaker! Where could you be?

I need a clock that is made just for me!”

And the clockmaker would come to the door and respond,

“I am the clockmaker, for heaven’s sake!

What kind of clock would you like me to make?”

Then the person would describe a special clock, such as one that chirped like a bird, or crowed like a rooster. Some would ask him to make a clock that grew out of the ground from a seed. Others would ask him to make a clock that sang, or danced, or laughed, and the clockmaker could always fulfill the request.

One day a man came to the clockmaker’s shop, pounded on the door, and said,

“Clockmaker, clockmaker! Where could you be?

I need a clock that is made just for me!”

so the clockmaker came to the door, opened it, and said,

“I am the clockmaker, for heaven’s sake!

What kind of clock would you like me to make?”

And the man sighed and said,

“I do not work, I do not play.

I do not walk or go swimming in fountains,

I do not camp or go climbing in mountains.

Sitting and waiting in boredom I say!

Too many hours I have in my day!”

The clockmaker scratched his chin and thought for a moment. Then he smiled at the man and said,

“I have the perfect idea for you,

come back to my shop in an hour or two!”

So the man left in great hope, but he wasn’t sure what to do with the two hours after all, that can be a long time to be bored. But he went and sat on the fence outside the shop and waited for the two hours.

When he returned to the door, he knocked and said,

“Clockmaker, clockmaker, where could you be?

Have you finished the clock you are making for me?”

The clockmaker opened the door, and with a big smile, invited the man inside. There on the clockmaker’s table was the strangest clock the man had ever seen. It was round like a clock, it had hands like a clock, and it had numbers like a clock. It ticked like a clock, it rang like a clock, and it even smelled like a clock! But it only had three numbers on it: 1, 2, and 3. But strangest of all, the clock had a large pair of wings like a bird. The clockmaker smiled again at the man and said,

“I think that this clock will be suiting you well,

it has all it’s hands, and it’s ticker and bell.

But this clock has none but three hours in it’s day,

and wings that will help time to fly on it’s way.”

The man smiled and said,

“Time will no longer be mine like a crutch!

Clockmaker, clockmaker, thank you so much!”

And he walked away singing merrily.
Later that afternoon, a woman came to the clockmaker’s shop and knocked on the door, panting loudly and saying

“Clockmaker, clockmaker! Where could you be?

I need a clock that is made just for me!”

So the clockmaker came to the door, opened it, and said,

“I am the clockmaker, for heaven’s sake! What kind of clock would you like me to make?”

“Working and mending,” the woman began,

“doing the chores just as fast as I can;

I never am able to finish my sewing,

no matter how fast it seems I am going.

My cows must be milked and the cream must be shaken,

my kids go to school, so they must be taken.

I do it myself, ’cause my husband is dead

from the moment I wake till I go back to bed!

If I could have time to get everything done,

I might have some time for some hobbies and fun! “

When the woman finished speaking, she was so tired that she leaned on the door-post just to keep from falling over. The clockmaker scratched his chin and thought for a moment. Then he smiled at the woman and said,

“I have the perfect idea for you, come back to my shop in an hour or two!”

So the woman left in great hope, but she had to run because she had so much to do in the two hours after all, two hours is not much time to get things done! But she ran home as fast as she could so she could get enough done in two hours.

After getting as much done as she possibly could in the two hours, she returned to the clockmaker’s shop, and knocked on the door, saying

“Clockmaker, clockmaker, where could you be? Have you finished the clock that you’re making for me?”

The clockmaker opened the door, and with a big smile, invited the woman inside. There on the clockmaker’s table was the strangest clock the woman had ever seen. It was round like a clock, it had hands like a clock, and it had numbers like a clock. It ticked like a clock, it rang like a clock, and it even smelled like a clock! But it had twenty-one numbers on it: 1, 2, 3, all the way up to 21! But strangest of all, the clock was welded to a great big round rock. The clockmaker smiled again at the woman and said,

“I think that this clock will be suiting you well,

for it has all it’s hands, and it’s ticker and bell.

But this clock has twenty one hours in it’s face,

and a great big rock that keeps time at slow pace.

Time don’t like slowing, but I found a way!

Forty two hours you will have in a day!”

The woman smiled and said,

“Time will mine for my projects and such! Clockmaker, clockmaker, thank you so much!”

And she walked away singing merrily.

As she was walking away, the clockmaker could see a man pass her, coming toward his shop. It was the man with the 3 hour clock! But the clockmaker could see that the man was struggling to keep up with his clock, as it was flying much faster than he was walking. It swooped and swirled, and the man jumped to catch it, but it was too hard for him. So he left the clock flying around and continued toward the clockmaker’s shop.

“Clockmaker, clockmaker! Help me I beg!

I can’t catch my clock, and I have a sore leg!

All of this rushing has me in a daze,

and since I last saw you has now past 3 days!

I rise in the morning and eat a good meal,

but I don’t have the time to just do as I feel,

for the time is now past, and the the day is near dead,

so I eat up some dinner and go back to bed!”

The clockmaker scratched his chin and thought for a moment. Then he told the man

“I need some time to decide what to do, come back to my shop in an hour or two!”

An hour later, the clockmaker heard a knock at the door, and when he opened it, he was surprised to see the woman for whom he had made the clock with 21 hours. She looked very flustered.

“Clockmaker, clockmaker, you did me well,

but I can’t stand this clock with it’s rock or it’s bell.

I don’t mind the sound of the hourly chime,

but it drives me mad by the twentieth time!

This clock is also too heavy to lug,

and it’s leaving a dent in my nicely fluffed rug!”

The clockmaker scratched his chin and thought for a moment. Now he had two big problems. He paced the floor and puzzled. Then after a minute or so, he smiled broadly and told the woman

“I have a clearly splendiforous plan, come back to my shop in an hour if you can!”

An hour later, the man with the 3-hour day came running back to the shop, still chasing his clock. Then came the woman, struggling to carry her rock-welded clock. They looked at each other, then banged on the door at the same time, both shouting,

“Clockmaker, clockmaker! Where could you be? Have you found the solution that you promised me?”

The clockmaker opened his door and looked at the two people standing there.

“My friends,” he began with a smile on his face,

“both of you have a most challenging race!

A difficult problem, a challenging riddle!

One with too much time, and one with too little!

But can you not see that your answer is clear?

The trick to your problem is standing right here!”

Then the clockmaker handed them a simple, ordinary, twelve hour clock, and said to the man,

“Go help this woman, do what she asks,

help with her chores and some of her tasks.

That will give you a good thing to do,

and will help her to complete her work, too.

So, my good friends, I bid you farewell!

A twelve hour clock should suit both of you well.”

Then the man looked at the woman, and the woman at the man.

“That’s brilliant!” he said, “a remarkable plan!” Then she said, “good sir, your a wonderful man!”

They both thanked the clockmaker, and left, both singing cheerfully along their way, never needing to return to the clockmaker.

One Reply to “The Clockmaker”

  1. Even when I was a kid, I never much enjoyed childrens stories but this one is good. Thanks for sharing.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *