Bottled Time – A Tribute to Jim Croce

Minute by precious minute

Hour by hour

Days and weeks and months

Centuries and eons pass

Time never slows

Never speeds up

It just is…


And yet

We try to manage it

Manipulate it

Recreate it and recalculate it

And we fail

Time and time again

No pun intended


It’s priceless

But also worthless

We cannot buy or sell

Rent or loan

Borrow or inherit 

And still we try

And still we fail


The elusive bottle

Of a song long ago

Tells us our truths 

Intentions not mentioned

Are without value

For no day lasts forever

And time won’t stand still


But if we could wish

On just one single day

That time had no bearing

Hands frozen

For only the chosen

What would we do?

What would we say?


Would we squander

Or maybe wander

See the whole world

Or follow old Jim

And just hang with the one

Find the box for the wishes

And unanswered dreams 


Sort out the memories

Keep the good

Dump the bad

Make plans for the future

Share the same hand

Get in harmony with a lover

And have drinks on the sand


Authors Note

This work was inspired by an old Jim Croce song called “Time in a Bottle” -lyrics below.

If I could save time in a bottle
The first thing that I’d like to do
Is to save every day
‘Til eternity passes away
Just to spend them with you
If I could make days last forever
If words could make wishes come true
I’d save every day like a treasure and then,
Again, I would spend them with you
But there never seems to be enough time
To do the things you want to do
Once you find them
I’ve looked around enough to know
That you’re the one I want to go
Through time with
If I had a box just for wishes
And dreams that had never come true
The box would be empty
Except for the memory
Of how they were answered by you
But there never seems to be enough time
To do the things you want to do
Once you find them
I’ve looked around enough to know
That you’re the one I want to go
Through time with
Songwriters: Jim Croce
Time in a Bottle lyrics © BMG Rights Management US, LLC
R J Schwartz
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R J Schwartz

I write about everything and sometimes nothing at all. I'm fascinated by old things, rusty things, abandoned places, or anywhere that a secret might be unearthed. I'm passionate about history and many of my pieces are anchored in one concept of time or another. I've always been a writer, dating back to my youth, but the last decade has been a time of growth for me. I'm continually pushing the limitations of vocabulary, syntax, and descriptive phrasing.

4 thoughts on “Bottled Time – A Tribute to Jim Croce

  • May 30, 2018 at 8:54 PM

    Enjoyed Ralph, yes time has always been an enigma, and as solid as we think it is, it changes freely as we perceive it. We don’t observe reality, our perceptions create it. Something to ponder. Great work.

  • May 31, 2018 at 1:59 AM

    Well, Ralph, you hit the mark here. I am a dedicated Jim Croce fan…….love his songs and his amazing storytelling. Time in a Bottle is one of those classics and you captured the essence of its message in your poem as well. Great work.

  • June 1, 2018 at 11:28 AM

    Love your poem and love that song. I have often said it is a dilemma I could use 48 hours in one day but when I have a day that I cannot do anything but be sad what will I do with those 48 hours.

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