Is it any wonder that "A Matter of Time," the September 2002 single-topic issue, brought out the pensive side of Scientific American's readers? Letter writers reflected, often at great length, on the mysteries of time. "We presume to break time up into little units when we define hours, seconds and nanoseconds," wrote Pete Boardman of Groton, N.Y. "But time is not an object to be divided or a substance that moves. Time is the measuring stick, the ruler, the clock. It is earth rotating on its axis. It is earth orbiting around the sun. It is sand flowing through a narrow hole in an hourglass, the repetitive swing of a pendulum, the decay of cesium atoms." Some even turned to poetry to express their reactions, such as the first of the other musings that await on the following two pages, for those who care to take the time.
EVERYTHING AT ONCE
This article was originally published with the title Letters.