Far and Away

By Pete Tucker

How is it that you measure distance?
By the miles you traveled today?
The total turns of your wagon’s wheel
Before time gets in your way?

I might suggest another measure
From my hammock in the trees.
A loosely defined calibration
As practiced by retirees!

I peer to a far off meadow,
As far as my eye will bear.
How distant is it through the pastures?
How many wheel turns to get there?

Cattle are placidly grazing.
They are but distant specs.
They are my measure of distance,
Those tiny blackened flecks!

Just how far are they?
I’ve no need to venture a guess.
Surely they’re down the road a piece.
Could be more, could be less.

I know just roughly where they are,
But I need not really care.
Yes, it’s down the road a piece
And yesterday I was there.

But now I’m settled in,
In my hammock in the trees.
Just how distant are those tiny specs?
The question affronts my life of ease.